Global Innovation Challenge: 2019 Finalist

Integrated

Trust

Regulator

 

Tackling mistrust and regulation concerns within trust funds

 

The governance of trust accounts by lawyers, notaries, and real estate professionals is an area of growing concern to regulators and the public at large. The risk—and frequent reality—of misappropriation of funds creates mistrust and pressure for tighter and increased government regulation. To address these issues, PwC Canada has built Integrated Trust Regulator, which was selected as a finalist in PwC’s Global Innovation Challenge 2019.

 


Setting the scene

Lawyers, notaries, and real estate boards worldwide handle very large volumes of trust accounts. Yet these professions are typically self-regulated. Stories about incidences of misappropriation and mismanagement erode public trust and often trigger calls for increased government regulation.

A further issue is that current regulation of the professions that use trust accounts is time-intensive, inconsistent and largely manual, giving little insight into money laundering risks. With trust account fraud and money-laundering on the rise, these self-regulated professions need a new regulation model if they’re to keep their self-regulated status.

How we helped

A team bringing together business and technical experience from across PwC, identified the need for a new way of monitoring and validating trust account activities—and set about innovating to meet it. Applying advanced technologies including robotic process automation (RPA) and data analytics, the project team set out to streamline the collection, validation, and analysis of trust account data and the identification of the related risks, to make it easier and quicker to identify inappropriate trust fund activities.

The solution the team developed —Integrated Trust Regulator —is designed for use by law society regulators and other professions who have oversight of trust accounts such as notaries and real estate associations. The product, which is provided flexibly as a managed service, can be tailored to the rules of most jurisdictions and regulators, and provides services across three areas.

First, the solution’s technology and analytics component handles data collection, validation, analysis and visualisation. The users upload their trust account information, which is validated using RPA, and is then subjected to risk scoring and analytic-based testing tailored to local regulatory requirements. The second area is audit risk assessment, helping to pinpoint any suspicious activity on the accounts. The third is audit services, which helps to execute trust audit procedures on behalf of the regulator.

Impact and potential

Integrated Trust Regulator reflects the drive of PwC’s purpose of solving important problems and building trust in society.

The solution provides regulators in any jurisdiction with insights into trust fund activity — enhancing their oversight of this important area, and enabling them to identify and tackle incidences of fraud such as money laundering and misappropriation earlier, faster and more effectively. This in turn helps to improve public trust and allay concerns over self-regulation.


Innovation is a mindset – not a technology. 

That’s why the PwC Global Innovation Challenge is commercially and client focused, leveraging what we know, through technology to deliver new ways of working, services, and products. In 2019, over 4300 innovators took part, submitting 273 solutions from 119 territories.

Innovation is a mindset – not a technology. 

That’s why the PwC Global Innovation Challenge is commercially and client focused, leveraging what we know, through technology to deliver new ways of working, services, and products. In 2019, over 4300 innovators took part, submitting 273 solutions from 119 territories.

Innovation is in our DNA

The Global Innovation Challenge is just one of the ways that innovation comes to life in everything we do at PwC. Find out more here.

loading-player

Playback of this video is not currently available

Victoria Huff Eckert

Victoria Huff Eckert

Global Innovation and New Ventures Leader, PwC US

Sheridan Ash

David C. Whiteley

Partner, Capital Markets Accounting Advisory Services PwC Canada

Sheridan Ash

Mark Mandel

Partner, One Analytics, PwC Canada

Sheridan Ash

Peter Harris

Partner, Assurance, PwC Canada

Sheridan Ash

Krista A. Mooney

Partner, Forensic Services, PwC Canada