An AML investigation is a process to detect suspicious activity in financial institutions. To perform a thorough investigation, an investigator must have analytic skills. Analytical skills include layering, integration, and detecting unusual activities. AML investigators need to be able to gather information from a variety of sources.

Analytical skills

An AML analyst’s analytical skills help them discover whether a financial institution has engaged in money laundering or other illegal activity. They can also identify suspicious transactions and identify their sources. AML analysts also need to be able to interpret complex data. They need to be able to identify suspicious activity as well as recognize individuals hiding their identities.

AML investigators work with large amounts of financial data and need to be able to analyze these records. They must also know how to interpret complex regulations and apply them to specific situations. They also need to be good at organizing their work areas and documents. Having strong organizational and analytical skills will help them locate relevant information in a timely manner.

Moreover, AML analysts must be able to analyze information and assess risk in an objective manner. While this can be challenging because of the various types of investigations, it is important to understand the different types of data and how they should be analysed. In addition, they should be able to apply new regulations to existing systems. This will enable them to support the creation of additional scenarios and define the investigation process.


Money laundering is a complex process that involves moving large sums of money from one country to another through electronic transfers. One common method is using offshore accounts and offshore companies. For example, a criminal may wire funds to an offshore corporation that is owned by a trust in another country. Then, the criminal can disguise the transfers to appear as legitimate payments.

This process can be complicated by the lack of specific laws in the country where the money laundering activities take place. It is important to recognize that the AML regulations in some countries do not allow for the use of layering techniques. For example, in British Columbia, Canada, there are no laws that prevent the buying of real estate through another person, which has contributed to the housing crisis in the country. However, in other countries, such as the UK, layers can be detected and traced by using specialized AML technology.

Layering in AML investigations refers to the process of moving funds from one account to another by adding layers of legitimate owners. This makes it difficult for authorities to trace the original source of the funds. In this process, a criminal will receive funds from one illegal activity, move them to a legitimate business account, and then funnel those funds through a gambling business or other business.


Integration of AML investigations is a vital component of an AML compliance program. This program helps to identify suspicious activity and determine the appropriate course of action. The process begins with a trigger event, which contains information on suspicious activity. This event could be anything from suspicious activity on an individual’s account to suspicious activity on a company’s platform.

Investigations are difficult to manage because of the large volume of data involved. To be effective, they must be focused on high-quality leads. These include specific requests from law enforcement, names associated with transgressions, or known high-risk websites. This will help reduce the number of false positives that occur during the investigations. Studies have shown that about 95 percent of investigations submitted in response to FinCEN requests result in positive results. Moreover, leading institutions report that 80 percent of their investigations result in productive outputs. This compares to a mere two percent for alerts that do not share information.

Anti-money laundering (AML) is a set of policies, procedures, and technologies that are implemented in financial institutions and government systems to detect and prevent fraudulent activities. It consists of three key steps: identifying the types of suspicious activity, implementing a holding period, and applying software filters.

Detecting unusual activities

Detecting unusual activities during AML investigations requires an in-depth understanding of customer activity. As a result, investigators have to gather data from multiple sources and manipulate it in different ways. For instance, they need to search through spreadsheets, graphic design programs, word processors, and shared drives to gather information. This process can be tedious and time-consuming. In addition, sometimes, suspicious activity may go unnoticed.

One method of identifying unusual activity is through a transaction monitoring system. A transaction monitoring system can be manual or automated, and is aimed at specific types of transactions. It may include manual reviews of vendor or bank MIS reports, or the use of filtering models. It can also include the use of images, third-party data, and transaction histories.

Different banks may use different tools to detect suspicious activity, and the structure of these processes may vary. For instance, a large bank may use entire departments dedicated to this task, while a small bank may use one employee to complete several tasks. Regardless of the approach, a policy should clearly outline the steps for each component, and identify the responsible parties.