SBP launches bio-metric verification of bank account holders; first phase to be completed by Nov 30

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KARACHI: State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has directed all banks to complete first phase of bio-metric verification of existing account holders by November 30, 2018, a statement said on Friday.

 

 

The SBP further directed that the second phase of verification process should be completed by January 31, 2019 and the last phase should be concluded by June 30, 2019.

The SBP issued a circular under Regulation- I related to (Customer Due Diligence – CDD) of AML/CFT Regulations, which requires banks/DFIs, on on-going basis, to perform such CDD measures as may be appropriate to its existing customers having regard to their own assessment of materiality and risk but without compromise on identity and verification requirements. Thus, ongoing CDD is an essential part of an effective AML/CFT regime.

The SBP said that the process of bio-metric should be completed in following manner:
a) Ensure optimal utilization of bio-metric technology and carry out bio-metric verification of the existing customers (if already not done) as per following timelines and thresholds:

Priority Category of Customers Threshold Timeline
High Priority Listed /Public Limited Companies Account turnover exceeding PKR 1,000 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018. 30th November 2018
Private Limited. Companies Account turnover exceeding PKR 500 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or  for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018.
All customers except Public/Private Limited Companies Account turnover exceeding PKR 250 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018.
Medium Priority Listed /Public Limited Companies Account turnover from PKR 500 million to PKR 1000 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018. January 31, 2019
Private Limited. Companies Account turnover from PKR 250 million to PKR 500 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018.
All customers except Public/Private Limited Companies Account turnover from PKR 100 million to PKR 250 million for any of the calendar year 2016, 2017 or for a period since January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018.
Normal All other accounts not covered in the above categories 30th June 2019

i. Biometric verification of persons authorized to open and operate the account of legal entities or legal arrangements shall be conducted.
ii. In case of customers whose eligible identity documents are other than biometrically verifiable documents, re-validation/ verification of identity shall be done based on documents, data or information obtained from customer and/or from reliable and independent sources having regard to bank/DFI’s own assessment of materiality and risk.
b) Confirm compliance status of their internal risk review of remaining legacy portfolio of customers, as required vide BPRD Circular Letter No. 20 dated June 14, 2017 latest by October 31, 2018.
The SBP said that banks/DFIs must ensure strict observance of all applicable instructions including identification and verification of customers and their beneficial owner(s) and obtain information on the purpose and intended nature of business relationship.
The monitoring mechanism in place at banks/DFIs should be adequately resourced and strengthened to ensure that the transactions being conducted in the accounts are consistent with the banks/ DFIs’ knowledge of their customer, business, risk profile and the source of funds.
With the objective to know the ultimate beneficial ownership of accounts/ transactions, the banks/DFIs shall enhance their efforts to obtain relevant information and examine background and purpose of all complex, unusual large transactions and unusual patterns of transactions, which do not commensurate with customer profile or have no apparent economic or visible lawful purpose.
SBP during the course of inspection will particularly assess the compliance of above requirements and non-compliance will attract appropriate enforcement action in accordance with relevant laws.

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  • How overseas Pakistanis all over the world will be able to get this verification done as their would be countless Pakistanis have and operate accounts in Pakistan.