As an active FinTech market participant, ECOVIS ProventusLaw pays great attention and gives great priority to AML and regulatory compliance issues, as this is one of the key drivers for ensuring sustainability, stability, and further development of the Lithuanian Fintech ecosystem. As a result, ECOVIS ProventusLaw strengthens its AML group. Moreover, as FinTech companies continue to navigate rapidly changing business models, regulatory requirements, technology disruption, responding to clients’ needs, an internal audit expert has recently joined the ECOVIS ProventusLaw Fintech and Banking/ Finance team too. This corresponds to the increased focus of the Bank of Lithuania in strengthening intolerance of FinTech market participants to money laundering.
The importance of AML Controls
Lithuania’s financial market went through significant changes recently: fast technological progress resulted in the transfer of financial services to the digital domain, which prompted changes in consumer expectations and habits. FinTech companies usually operate exclusively in the digital area not only in Lithuania but also in the whole EU and the whole world. This also altered the financial market’s risk profile by attributing a more important role to cybersecurity and anti-money laundering. AML procedures operate as gatekeepers against general fraudulent activity. What is more important to note that any AML crisis can seriously affect the reputation of a financial institution. Implementation of money laundering regulations can increase brand awareness and this would allow consumers to see that the business as safe.
Experienced anti-money laundering compliance experts
As the need for various AML compliance services – ML/TF risk assessment, independent AML audit, AML training, etc. – is growing, ECOVIS ProventusLaw, as an active FinTech market participant meeting client’s expectations, has expanded its forces in AML compliance area too. The law firm is pleased to announce that Juratė Stankevičienė, who was a Team Leader in Anti Money Laundering at Danske Bank Global Service Delivery, with almost 20 years of experience as a banker in top banks in Lithuania, has joined its FinTech team.
“We have been looking for a highly qualified AML expert with huge experience in the banking area, mature leader, so we are extremely happy that Juratė is joining us. I believe that Jūratė will significantly strengthen our banking and FinTech practice area, especially in the provision of services in the field of AML together with me, Austėja Viederytė, Vilius Neverdauskas, Rūta Sakalauskaitė. We are trying to meet our client’s needs for top-quality legal services, AML audits, AML trainings, advice in AML inspections performed by the Regulators”, says Inga Karulaitytė, partner, a head of ECOVIS ProventusLaw FinTech team and an AML expert.
Financial Institution’s Internal Audit Services
ECOVIS ProventusLaw was previously joined by Daiva Lideikienė, who is now the Head of Banking and Investment Practice Group of the law firm. Daiva started her career in the credit field at NORD/LB bank in Germany. After her return to Lithuania, she took leading positions in the field of credit risk management at NORD/LB, DNB NORD, and DNB banks for many years. Daiva held the position of the Chief Risk Officer at newly established banks and gained experience in the full process of establishment and management of the bank from licensing to the start of activities.
She manages a wide range of internal audit services and audit with all relevant topics for financial institutions: AML/CFT Compliance Program, Safeguarding of Customers’ Funds, Capital Adequacy, Outsourcing Arrangements, etc. According to legal requirements from the Bank of Lithuania (LB), it is obligatory for financial institutions, including electronic money institutions and payment institutions, to have an internal audit in place. Institutions shall review internal processes and procedures, in particular those relating to internal control and risk management, protection of customers’ funds, and establish internal documentation governing these areas in accordance with the new requirements. As a result, internal audit is a good tool for checking if all procedures are in place and what should be improved in the activity of e-money or payment institution.