Bank secrecy

Bank secrecy (or bank privacy) is a legal principle in some jurisdictions under which banks are not allowed to provide to authorities personal and account information about their customers unless certain conditions apply (for example, a criminal complaint has been filed). In some cases, additional privacy is provided to beneficial owners through the use of numbered bank accounts or otherwise. Bank secrecy is prevalent in certain countries such as Switzerland, Lebanon, Singapore and Luxembourg, as well as offshore banks and other tax havens under voluntary or statutory privacy provisions.

Created by the Swiss Banking Act of 1934, which led to the famous Swiss bank numbered account, the principle of bank secrecy is always considered one of the main aspects of private banking. It has also been accused by NGOs and governments of being one of the main instruments of underground economy and organized crime, in particular following the class action suit against the Vatican Bank in the 1990s, the Clearstream scandal and the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Former bank employees from banks in Switzerland (UBS, Julius Baer) and Liechtenstein (LGT Group) have testified that their former institutions helped clients evade billions of dollars in taxes by routing money through offshore havens in the Caribbean and Switzerland. One of these, Rudolf M. Elmer, wrote, "It is a global problem...Offshore tax evasion is the biggest theft among societies and neighbor states in this world." The Swiss Parliament ratified on June 17, 2010 an agreement between the Swiss and the United States governments allowing UBS to transmit to the US authorities information concerning 4,450 American clients of UBS suspected of tax evasion.

Latest News for: Bank secrecy laws

Edit

“Your Expectations of Privacy Are Too High” (But They Shouldn’t Be)

XBT.MONEY 17 Mar 2020
... and in violation of a number of federal laws ... But parallels between the massive expansion of two nearly contemporaneous government initiatives, the “Bank Secrecy Act” (October 26, 1970) and the so-called “War on Drugs” (June 18, 1971) over half a century cannot be ignored....
Edit

Dirty money, secrecy top Philippine bank group chief’s concerns

Gulf News 13 Mar 2020
The Philippines’ loose law against money laundering and strict deposit secrecy rules risk isolating its banks from the global financial system, according to the president of the nation’s largest group of lenders ... That would mean restrictions on international banking transactions for Philippine citizens and companies....
Edit

Phillipines may be put on global monitoring list for ‘dirty money’

Business Day 12 Mar 2020
Manila — The Philippines’ loose law against money laundering and strict deposit secrecy rules risk isolating its banks from the global financial system, according to the president of the nation’s largest group of lenders ... That would mean restrictions on international banking transactions for Philippine citizens and companies....
Edit

The Weekly Hash – November 18 – 22

Kraken 25 Nov 2019
... MSB with FinCEN, meaning firms dealing with them must follow federal KYC/AML laws under the Bank Secrecy Act, “FinCEN applies the same technology neutral regulatory framework to any activity that provides the same functionality at the same level or risk, regardless of its label....
Edit

Collins Community Credit Union expanding into Illinois

Cedar Rapids Gazette 22 Nov 2019
In March, the FDIC placed First Savanna under a consent order because of unsafe and unsound banking practices and alleged violations of laws and regulations of the Bank Secrecy Act ... and alleged Bank Secrecy Act violations, it consented to the order, according the FDIC document....
Edit

Soldier who shot Lebanese protester dead charged with murder

Arab News 21 Nov 2019
Also on Thursday, Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri called for a session next Wednesday to study draft laws related to banking secrecy and retaking stolen state money. Berri’s call came two days after protesters prevented legislators from reaching the parliament building to draft and study new laws....
Edit

Wyoming is getting ready to start banking with cryptocurrency. But is it safe?

Billings Gazette 18 Nov 2019
“The challenge we have right now is that businesses who use cryptocurrency have trouble finding traditional banking services, and the reason for that challenge is the Bank Secrecy Act, the anti-money laundering laws, the know your customer laws ... While SPDI banks were once limited ......
Edit

IMF keeps 2019 GDP forecast

The Manila Times 18 Nov 2019
In order to promote inclusive growth, IMF said the government should focus also on “continued tax reform, relaxing restrictions on foreign investment, broadening poverty reduction efforts, easing the stringent banking secrecy law, and upgrading the capacity of public administration.” ....
Edit

Govt tax effort improves to 15.7% in Jan-Sept

The Manila Times 08 Nov 2019
... levels,” Security Bank Corp ... • Package 1B, which seeks reforms in the motor vehicle users’ charge and the Bank Secrecy Law; ... This law reduced personal income taxes in exchange for higher excise taxes on certain products, including automobiles, coal and sugar-sweetened beverages....
Edit

RBI launches probe after IDBI lets LIC access client data

The Hindu 07 Nov 2019
... and other agencies, banks shall satisfy themselves that the information being sought is not of such a nature as will violate the provisions of law relating to secrecy in the banking transaction....
Edit

Feature: "The Hub" uncovers civilized aspect in Lebanon's protests

Xinhua 07 Nov 2019
Berri pledged to put on the agenda several laws and proposals, including the anti-corruption law, a law for social security for the elderly, and important laws submitted by a number of deputies concerning the recuperation of squandered public funds and the lifting of banking secrecy....
Edit

Lebanon parliament to study laws proposed by civil society: speaker

Xinhua 05 Nov 2019
... by a number of deputies concerning the recuperation of squandered public funds and the lifting of banking secrecy," Berri was quoted as saying by Elnashra, an online independent newspaper....
Edit

The rise and the fall of Sa’ad Hariri

Gulf News 01 Nov 2019
... Foreign Minister Gibran Bassil, head of the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) and son-in-law of President Michel Aoun ... They also asked that his government lift secrecy laws on the bank account of prominent politicians, in order to freeze those exceeding $100 million (Dh367.8 million)....
×