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Back to "Community & Associations Newsletter - June 2017"


Combatting money laundering and terrorist financing

On 24 May 2017 the ACNC co-hosted a seminar with Deloitte on the topic “Reducing the risk of money laundering and terrorist financing to the Australian non-profit sector”.

The seminar provided strategies for non-profits to mitigate the risk of international fraud.

  1. Internal governance and account controls

According to Jessica Horey, ACNC compliance manager, non-profits who are at risk of being the targets of international fraud :

  • Have a small annual turnover.
  • Are relatively new – having only been in operation for 1 to 4 years.
  • Are service oriented; and
  • Have effected at least one financial transfer either in or out of Australia.

Ms Horey recommended that to protect themselves non-profits should:

  • Only use trusted financial institutions.
  • Have employees rotate their roles and duties.
  • Encourage and promote a culture of financial transparency.
  1. Relationships with on-site staff and partners

Oliver May, Deloitte Director, suggested Australian non-profits working with overseas  partners should:

  • Not rely on audits but – conduct on-site visits to ensure that the project is being undertaken in an efficient and appropriate manner.
  • Provide opportunities for staff and partners to learn about the risk of international fraud, such as through:
  • Running risk workshops
  • Conducting surveys
  • Providing whistleblowing hotlines
  • Include management of risk as part of job descriptions and staff performance reviews.

The ACNC have developed a checklist for charities to help mitigate the risk of terrorism financing.

Josephine Heesh, Partner
Merryn Lynch, Solicitor

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