How do you define Adverse Media?

Adverse Media is information about a specific organization or individual, that would signal potential negative regulatory, financial, or reputation risk to companies looking to or currently doing business with them.

This information needs to be based on fact, and not opinion, which means that sources need to be classed as reputable in our validation process. Adverse Media comes as unstructured text in sources such as websites or blogs from public or private institutions, commercial organizations, news outlets, or private individuals.

Relevant articles are presented to the user in a consolidated profile. Each reference to an article contains:

  • Weblink to access the actual article or webpage
  • Article title and publishing date if they are available
  • A snippet of the relevant part of the article to provide insight into the adverse nature of the associated media

FATF-Aligned Adverse Media Taxonomy

Our adverse media profiles are assigned at least one category depending on the type of media they have been associated with. The categories enable users to distribute risk across different teams and to better understand the context of a profile.

Adverse Media categories can include:

  • Financial AML/CFT
  • Narcotics AML/CFT
  • Violence AML/CFT
  • Terrorism
  • Fraud-linked
  • Property
  • Cybercrime
  • General AML/CFT

If you would like to check each category description along with FATF and EU ML Directive confirmation, please reach out to First AML Support to receive the entire document.

What languages are available for Adverse Media articles?

Adverse Media sources related to individuals contain 11 different languages including:

  1. English
  2. Portuguese
  3. Spanish
  4. French
  5. German
  6. Italian
  7. Dutch
  8. Chinese
  9. Arabic
  10. Japanese
  11. Russian

Adverse Media sources related to entities can be found only in the English language, which means we do not look for and classify organizations from non-English sources. However, all countries have some English media which ensures we still have coverage outside of English-speaking countries.

Do you cover the Panama papers or ICIJ Offshore Leaks Database?

Currently, ComplyAdvantage does not include individuals on our Adverse Media sources solely because they are mentioned in a leak of Offshore documents.

The main reason for that is some people can use offshore bank accounts for legitimate reasons and solely having an offshore bank account doesn’t make someone (or a company) adverse.

However, we do cover news websites and websites such as the ICIJ, where articles about investigations into illegitimate use of bank accounts will be written. If a person is written about for the nefarious use of offshore accounts, they should therefore appear in our Adverse Media coverage.