Browse Definitions :
Definition

Bank Secrecy Act (BSA)

The Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), also known as the Currency and Foreign Transactions Reporting Act, is legislation passed by the United States Congress in 1970 that requires U.S. financial institutions to collaborate with the U.S. government in cases of suspected money laundering and fraud. The purpose of the BSA, aside from making money laundering more difficult to propagate, is to prevent banks from becoming unknowing intermediaries in illicit activity.

In order to help prevent money laundering, the BSA requires banks to report transactions involving more than $10,000 in cash from one customer as a result of a single transaction or two or more related transactions that occur within a 24-hour period. Cash is defined as being currency and coins of the United States and any other country or certain monetary instruments such as cashier's checks, bank drafts, traveler's checks or money orders. A personal check is not considered to be cash.

The BSA also requires banks to report suspicious activity that might indicate possible money laundering or fraud. An activity is considered to be suspicious if it involves $5,000 or more in funds or assets that the financial institution suspects may indicate profit from illegal activity or transacted in order to hide illegal activity. Aside from traditional financial institutions such as banks and brokers, a variety of other institutions are required to report suspicious activity under the BSA, including businesses that issue or redeem money orders, casinos and dealers of gemstones and precious metals.

The BSA is sometimes referred to as an anti-money laundering law (AML) or jointly as BSA/AML. Several anti-money laundering acts, including provisions in title III of the USA PATRIOT Act, have been enacted up to the present to amend the BSA. The legislation is enforced by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). Reports filed with FinCEN are done so according to the Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) format.

This was last updated in November 2009

Continue Reading About Bank Secrecy Act (BSA)

SearchCompliance
  • compliance risk

    Compliance risk is an organization's potential exposure to legal penalties, financial forfeiture and material loss, resulting ...

  • information governance

    Information governance is a holistic approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, controls and ...

  • enterprise document management (EDM)

    Enterprise document management (EDM) is a strategy for overseeing an organization's paper and electronic documents so they can be...

SearchSecurity
  • hacker

    A hacker is an individual who uses computer, networking or other skills to overcome a technical problem.

  • Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP)

    The Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) is a protocol for wireless networks that expands the authentication methods used by ...

  • session key

    A session key is an encryption and decryption key that is randomly generated to ensure the security of a communications session ...

SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage
  • cloud storage

    Cloud storage is a service model in which data is transmitted and stored on remote storage systems, where it is maintained, ...

  • cloud testing

    Cloud testing is the process of using the cloud computing resources of a third-party service provider to test software ...

  • storage virtualization

    Storage virtualization is the pooling of physical storage from multiple storage devices into what appears to be a single storage ...

Close