Financial Services Blog

Our most recent post discussed some of the more complex screening scenarios, such as Politically Exposed Persons status (PEPs) and Sanctions Screening.  One of the difficulties with these screenings is ensuring a true match, which frequently means identifying and investigating false positives. Some financial institutions struggle with vast volumes of false positives, in some cases prompting firms to terminate PEPs accounts to decrease resources and compliance costs. 

As a result, financial institutions are re-thinking things. Many are reconsidering their approach to sanctions compliance and undertaking in-depth reviews of the target operating model and risk landscape.  

Fortunately, changes are on the horizon. 

Today, intelligent software is providing new opportunities to improve screening rules by using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to fine tune detection and matching strategies. For example, previous fuzzy matching criteria might pull back false positives with no ability to automatically discount individuals with the same name. Today, by contrast, new platforms can detect true matches more accurately and generate fewer false positives that require manual investigation. These platforms use additional data fields to assess whether the individuals are the same, even if the names are spelled differently or if translations are incomplete. They are also improving rules and processes to handle outcomes more intelligently and efficiently.  

Accenture has partnered with Ripjar Ltd1 to help financial institutions decrease false positives associated with sanctions and PEP screening by: 

  • Performing advanced entity-resolution across multiple languages, permutations and scripts, creating a golden record for each client before securely matching names in real-time to any number of sanctions and PEP providers. 
  • Offering Real-time alerts on PEPs and sanctions within all of an institution’s client records, eliminating manual searching and long gaps between reviews—automatically updated when PEP status changes or sanctions lists are updated. 
  • Using additional contextual information from the client record including location, nationality and incorporation details to reduce false positives on alerts. 
  • Showing an entity-centric view of risk and avoiding “swivel chair analytics” and streamlining compliance with sanctions, PEPs and adverse media alerts in the same place. 

Working with our partners, alliances and vendors, Accenture can help financial institutions restructure and strengthen their sanctions and PEPs screening capabilities without lowering the organization’s defenses against emerging risks. Get in touch to discuss how we can help you derive greater benefit from your compliance function today.  


  1. Ripjar Ltd site. Access at:  

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