Illegal arms sales, smuggling, and organised crime such as drug trafficking, people trafficking and prostitution rings, can generate huge amounts of money, as can ‘white collar crimes’ including, insider trading, bribery and computer fraud schemes.
The RegTech specialist, based in Ilkely West Yorkshire, was quick to react to the outbreak of the coronavirus, and subsequent rise in money laundering and financial crime, with enhanced products and new concepts to provide greater security for its customers.
Driven by increased demand for its user-friendly, ID verification system, the business saw sales rise by 13.5% over the course of the year and net profits up by almost a third at 28%.
In addition, SmartSearch brought on 840 new customers taking their total base to more than 5,000 client customers, with 45.000 users of its comprehensive, market-leading digital platform.
It was also the year that the firm, now in its tenth year, began to realise its ambitions for global growth by opening its first office outside the UK, in the U.S.
SmartSearch CEO John Dobson said that the success of the business has been down to the right combination of cutting-edge technology and exemplary customer service.
He added: “Clearly it was a year like no other and while we had been growing successfully year-on-year prior to 2020, the business really went up another level. As we said at the outbreak of coronavirus, an event of this magnitude will provide opportunities for unscrupulous criminals and professional enablers to commit fraud when collectively our guard is down.
“At SmartSearch we were able to respond to that demand very quickly and built new concept products such as the award-winning TripleCheck, which combines three highly sophisticated verification methods to set a new standard in AML security.
“But we also ensure our high standard of customer service is maintained at all times, with the focus on making the tech simple to operate for the end-user.
“The property sector has always been a prime target for money laundering and the pandemic exacerbated that because brokers and estate agents were still relying on manual ID checks when onboarding new customers, which is wide open to abuse.
“We developed the most robust and comprehensive verification system on the market, a one-stop-shop that provides a secure, digital solution. By moving to electronic verification there’s no need to meet people in person, which makes it efficient as well as covid-secure.
“By doing a smartsearch you get access to the most extensive databases in the world, with results back on individuals in just two seconds, and under three minutes for a business search.”