We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day – the bank sees all

“Banks have been put on the front line of defense against financial crime. That makes sense because they have the personal data and handle the money, but it takes a lot of work to check out clients’ sources of income and business relationships. To speed up the process and limit costs, banks have turned to third-party data firms and automated systems. The bureaucracy has been industrialized. It could be throwing up too many false positives, but it almost certainly is making it hard for individuals who get wrongly classified as risky to overturn those results. Once you’re in a database that is replicated and resold many times over, it can be an endless task to get yourself scrubbed from it. Politicians have made the most noise and got the regulator’s attention, but it seems likely to be others suffering bureaucratic nightmares. The FCA’s own data shows one in 10 British Muslims don’t have access to banking, compared with 2% of all UK adults. Regulators should look not only at banks’ policies for applying the rules, but also examine their systems for performing the job.”

Paul J Davies, columnist at Bloomberg ($). He makes excellent points about how banks, using tech services to keep on top of potential money launderers, have allowed their systems to run amok. The analogy here is the “no fly lists” that countries have for people suspected of terrorism, etc. If you get on these lists, and haven’t done anything wrong (such as if your name comes up as a “false positive”) it is a hellish job to get off them.

6 comments to Samizdata quote of the day – the bank sees all

  • Fraser Orr

    Let me say for the record that I think banks are not the police and so have no business engaging in anti money laundering activities. If the police want to track such things then let them get a subpoena to search financial records for the particulars they need based on probable cause in exactly the same way they’d need one to search your business records or under your corvette for improperly stored classified documents.

    There is some legitimacy to banks sharing information, with your permission, with other banks to determine a person’s creditworthiness. However, I think those organizations should be just as subject to the slander and libel laws as the rest of us are. If they are misrepresenting your credit record in such a way as to do your material harm it seems perfectly reasonable that you can sue them to recover the damage they have done to you and insist that they stop libeling you in the future.

  • bobby b

    At the very least, if banks are acting this way pursuant to state regulation, then the banks need to be subject to scrutiny as a “state actor”, leaving customers with the same rights they would have if a state subjected them to viewpoint discrimination.

  • Rich Rostrom

    10% of British Moslems are on the “No-bank list”? Alarming – if that is the result of false positives. It could also be the result of genuine positives. To assume the first without evidence is a bit islamophobophobic.

  • John

    If even a small percentage of UK resident Muslims have been denied banking facilities due to security concerns what does that say about the ongoing policy of allowing thousands of fighting aged males into the country every week without passports or ID and pretty much letting them go and do wherever or whatever they want?

    “Prevent” isn’t going to help, they’ve got all those white supremacists to worry about.

  • JC

    I’m thinking that a sizeable number of UK Moslems are declining to deal with banks, because, you know, (((jews))). Also, banks are haram unless run strictly on Koranic principles. Also, you know, (((jews))). And all my cash is tied up in my cousin’s Aston Martin and Used Camel Dealership. We get them cheaply overseas, and pass the savings…What is this! A-Stein Martin? HOW MANY CONTAINERLOADS? You know. (((jews)))

  • Paul Marks.

    Banks are, legalised, “financial crime”.

    Banks are not “Shylocks” lending out Real Savings of cash-money – most of the loans of banks are of “money” that never existed before the banks (and other financial entities) created it with book keeping tricks – fraud, but the fraud is legalised by the statutes and regulations of the state (the idea of “free banking” rather misses the point that banks utterly depend on the state allowing them to do things that an ordinary person would, rightly, be sent to prison for).

    Banker Credit Money bubbles eventually collapse (of course they do – banking, as opposed to honest money lending, is a Ponzi scheme) – but the state and its organs are there with their “suspension of cash payments” (upheld in the Scottish courts in the 1700s – so much for “Free Banking”) and bailouts – both open bailouts and (more normally) hidden bailouts. The state can do this because its money is entirely fiat (the last government currency that had any link to physical reality was the Swiss Franc – and that link ended in 2000, for the last 23 years the entire monetary and financial system of the world has been nothing but a scam), so the state can produce as much “money” as it likes – to dish out to its banker and other corporate friends (Cantillon Effect – a small group get rich, at the expense of everyone else).

    For these gangs of criminals (both state and corporate) to pretend to be “fighting crime” is ironic – and it is also a lie as can be seen by looking around and seeing how Western nations, including the United Kingdom, are overrun with crime.

    Of course the banks and other corporations of the international corporate state are NOT interested in “fighting crime” as ordinary people would understand the word “crime”.

    The banks and other corporations of the international corporate state, are interested in controlling opinions – it is non Progressive opinions (on political or cultural matters – “politics is downstream from culture”) that they regard as “crimes” to be punished.

    In the world of the future, which is becoming the world of the present, people with “reactionary” opinions will be excluded from economic life – they will not be able to run a business or have employment.

    Does anyone think by “crime” the Progressive international Corporate State means such things as the murder of an 18 year old conservative in North Dakota (yes even remote North Dakota is not safe now) – if you do, I have a nice bridge to sell you. They do not regard such things as crimes – killing conservatives is, after all, “Social Justice”.

    What they regard as “crimes” are, for example, denouncing obviously rigged elections, or “denying” the C02 is evil theory.

    “Financial crime” does not mean, for example, the profits of organised child rape – certainly not, “financial crime” means a “reactionary” person or group having a bank account or seeking payment services.