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CBA says 'coding error' responsible for alleged money laundering breaches

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CBA says 'coding error' responsible for alleged money laundering breaches

Commonwealth Bank of Australia said Aug. 7 that a software error was responsible for most of the anti-money laundering law violations it was accused of.

Australia's anti-money laundering regulator recently filed a civil lawsuit against the bank for alleged violation of money laundering and counterterrorism financing laws. The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre, or AUSTRAC, alleged that the bank made more than 53,700 contraventions of the law, particularly regarding its use of intelligent deposit machines.

A coding error occurred after a software upgrade in late 2012 and became apparent in 2015. The bank said it notified AUSTRAC and fixed the coding issue. "The vast majority of the reporting failures alleged in the statement of claim (approximately 53,000) relate specifically to this coding error," the bank said in a statement.

"We continue to have an ongoing cooperative relationship with AUSTRAC and have kept them abreast of proactive steps we have taken to further enhance our compliance program and operations," the bank said.