FinCEN to deploy data-sharing system

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network will launch a system March 1 so law enforcement and financial institutions can transmit information about people they suspect of financing terrorist activities or laundering money.

The new Web-based system will replace requests now made by e-mail.

Under the USA Patriot Act, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies can ask financial businesses to search their records for data about suspects. The businesses report any matches to the Treasury Department's FinCEN.

The Patriot Act Section 314(a) system will modernize and secure that information flow, FinCEN officials said.

The requests contain subject and business names, addresses and as much identifying data as possible for a financial organization to search its records. Over the past two years, the requests have led to nine arrests and two indictments, according to FinCEN.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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