November 08, 2017

Blanco named new director of FinCEN

The Treasury Department announced Wednesday that Kenneth Blanco will serve as director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). He is expected to transition to the position from his current post as acting assistant attorney general of the Criminal Division at the Justice Department in the next month.

FinCEN is a bureau of the Treasury Department that combats money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crimes through the Bank Secrecy Act and other statutes.

In September, NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger met with then FinCEN Acting Director Jamal El-Hindi for an update on the agency's priorities and to discuss credit union concerns with suspicious activity report filings (SARs), among other topics. NAFCU has previously raised concerns about the regulatory burden presented by FinCEN's rules on collecting SARs. The association has also addressed with FinCEN the currency transaction reporting process.

NAFCU has also voiced its opposition to FinCEN's final due diligence rules, effective May 11, 2018, because of the costs and burden they would impose on credit unions. The rules would amend the agency's existing rules, including a requirement for those opening bank or credit union accounts for a "legal entity" to provide information on the beneficial owners of the account.

NAFCU will continue monitoring FinCEN activities and advocate for limiting credit unions' related regulatory burden.