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Top Story Compliance Related


SEC requests comments on Fund Names Rule

The Securities and Exchange Commission is requesting public comment on its current requirements that restrict the use of potentially misleading fund names. Fund names are often the first piece of information investors see and they can have a significant impact on an investment decision. The request seeks feedback on whether the current requirements are effective and whether there are viable alternatives that the Commission should consider.


FTC sending $2M to defrauded consumers

The Federal Trade Commission has announced it is mailing 4,976 refund checks and sending 44,136 PayPal payments totaling over $2 million to consumers allegedly defrauded by American Immigration Center. According to the FTC, starting in 2010, the company falsely implied that its websites were affiliated with the U.S. government to sell immigration form preparation services to consumers, many of whom were trying to reach the actual government site to renew their green cards or apply for naturalization. Consumers often did not realize that they were not on a government website until they had already paid the defendants $120 to $300.


OCC revises handbook booklet

The OCC has issued a revised “Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act” booklet for the Comptroller's Handbook. The booklet provides information and procedures for examiners in connection with the foreclosure activities and related consumer protections covered under the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009 (PTFA). The OCC also rescinded:

  • OCC Bulletin 2011-15, “Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009: Revised Examination Procedures”
  • “Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook issued in May 2011

The revised booklet:

  • summarizes PTFA requirements;
  • discusses risks associated with a bank’s PTFA compliance; and
  • provides examiners with information and procedures regarding a bank’s risk management and PTFA compliance.


Cryptocurrency working session convened

Treasury yesterday convened a meeting of industry thought leaders and compliance experts to discuss supervisory and regulatory challenges facing digital assets, including cryptocurrency. Treasury is focused on preventing the misuse of virtual currencies by money launderers, terrorist financiers, and other bad actors.


Individuals laundering cryptocurrency sanctioned

Treasury has reported OFAC has sanctioned two Chinese nationals involved in laundering stolen cryptocurrency from a 2018 cyber intrusion against a cryptocurrency exchange. This cyber intrusion is linked to Lazarus Group, a U.S.-designated North Korean state-sponsored malicious cyber group. Seven unrelated deletions to the SDN List were also posted. For identification information, see BankersOnline's OFAC Update.


FDIC and OCC post CRA exam schedules

The FDIC and OCC have announced their second and third quarter 2020 schedules for CRA evaluations.


FDIC releases January enforcement orders

The FDIC has released a list of enforcement actions the agency took in January. A civil money penalty of $16,750 was assessed on a Montana Bank for a pattern or practice of flood insurance-related violations. Cease and desist orders were issued by consent to banks in Glendale, California, and Holmen, Wisconsin.

Removal/Prohibition orders were issued to:

  • a former banking center manager at Yosemite Bank, a division of Premier Valley Bank, Fresno, California, after a finding that he took funds payable to the bank and converted them for his personal benefit
  • the former CEO and Chairman of Citizens State Bank, Woodville, Texas, after a finding that he sought and obtained reimbursement from the bank for personal and family expenses and obtaining reimbursement for other expenses without proper documentation
  • a former teller at FNBC Bank & Trust, LaGrange, Illinois, after a finding that she misappropriated over $138,000 from a bank customer's deposits for personal gain or other benefit without reimbursing the customer or the bank


Wells Fargo settles with SEC

The SEC has announced it has settled charges against Wells Fargo Clearing Services and Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network for failing to reasonably supervise investment advisers and registered representatives who recommended single-inverse ETF (exchange-traded fund) investments to retail investors, and for lacking adequate compliance policies and procedures with respect to the suitability of those recommendations. The SEC ordered Wells Fargo to pay a $35 million penalty, which will be distributed to harmed investors.


OCC schedules workshops in Charleston WV

The OCC has announced it will host two workshops at the Holiday Inn & Suites in Charleston, West Virginia, April 14 and 15, for directors of national community banks and federal savings associations supervised by the OCC.

  • The Risk Governance workshop on April 14 provides practical information for directors to effectively measure and manage risks. The workshop also focuses on the OCC’s approach to risk-based supervision and major risks in the financial industry.
  • The Credit Risk workshop on April 15 focuses on credit risk within the loan portfolio, such as identifying trends and recognizing problems. The workshop also covers the roles of the board and management, how to stay informed of changes in credit risk, and how to effect change.

There is a fee of $99 for each workshop and each session is limited to the first 35 registrants.


Property owner charged for requiring fees for service animal

A New York property owner has been charged by HUD with illegal discrimination for denying the reasonable accommodation request of a resident with mental disabilities. HUD's charge further alleges that the owner attempted to charge the resident extra fees for having an assistance animal, made threats to intimidate and deter her from exercising her fair housing rights, and eventually evicted her. The Fair Housing Act makes it unlawful to refuse to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services, when such accommodation may be necessary to afford a person with disabilities equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. The Act also prohibits housing providers from threatening and coercing persons who seek to exercise their fair housing rights.


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