Global Financial Integrity

 

Issues

Illicit Financial Flows

Illicit financial flows (IFFs) are illegal movements of money or capital from one country to another. GFI classifies this movement as an illicit flow when the funds are illegally earned, transferred, and/or utilized.

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Trade Misinvoicing

Trade misinvoicing is a method for moving money illicitly across borders which involves deliberately misreporting the value of a commercial transaction on an invoice submitted to customs. A form of trade-based money laundering, trade misinvoicing is the largest component of illicit financial outflows measured by Global Financial Integrity.

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Money Laundering

Money laundering is the process of disguising the proceeds of crime and integrating it into the legitimate financial system. Before proceeds of crime are laundered, it is problematic for criminals to use the illicit money because they cannot explain where it came from and it is easier to trace it back to the crime. After being laundered, it becomes difficult to distinguish money from legitimate financial resources, and the funds can be used by criminals without detection.

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Anonymous Companies

An anonymous shell company is a corporate entity that has disguised its ownership in order to operate without scrutiny from law enforcement or the public. These “phantom firms” can open bank accounts and wire money like any other company, making them a favorite tool for money launderers to hide their business and assets from authorities.

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Tax Havens / Bank Secrecy

Tax Haven / Bank Secrecy

The phrase ‘tax haven’ often conjures up images of a balmy palm tree-studded island nation with an ‘anything goes’ attitude to accepting financial deposits and a distinct distaste for foreign authorities—“sunny places for shady people,” as author Nicholas Shaxson calls them. But these classical tax havens now have a lot of company—despite recent progress, there are still plenty of places all over the world where one can stash their money without scrutiny.

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Transnational Crime and Terrorist Financing

Most crimes committed in the world are crimes of greed. Transnational criminal networks can generate huge sums of money, and—like any other business—they require access to the international financial system in order to conduct their complex and far-reaching operations.

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