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Why Will Your Banking Fees Keep Rising?

One of my non-health care "hot buttons" is the state of electronic security around the world and how to better protect yourself from potential scams. Due to pressures forced by the Patriot Act, that criminal activity will certainly put a huge dent in our collective pocketbooks in the coming years.

Thanks to a rise in money laundering, financial institutions have forecasted they'll spend close to $15 billion between now and 2008 on software that will automatically track suspicious financial transactions, as well as monitor millions of innocent ones, along with hardware, maintenance and other compliance-related activities. The picture doesn't look any overseas, as Europe and Asia are expected to spend almost $12 billion during that time. By next year, 94 percent of large financial institutions in this country will have installed anti-money-laundering (AML) technologies.

Money laundering, both great and small, and those attendant costs aren't the only things you should be worried about, however. Some banking experts also predict an unintended consequence of new AML technology will also occur with some regularity: A rise in the incidence of people with no malice or intent who make an honest mistake or aren't paying attention being noticed by overly sensitive software.

In fact, one official believes the new software protocol will likely catch a regular person in a glitch or honest mistake than the savvy money launderer who can more easily cover his or her tracks.

Wired News April 26, 2005

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