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Compliance at Ripple Labs

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The compliance team at Ripple Labs is expanding, a reflection of our ongoing commitment to regulatory compliance and policy along with the team’s evolving responsibilities. As such, we wanted to provide an update on all things compliance.

When it comes to building products and services in finance, technology can only go so far on its own. As one of the most regulated industries on the planet with varying laws and rules across jurisdictions, successfully navigating the complex compliance landscape is fundamental to our work here at Ripple Labs. Our approach is two-pronged—building a robust compliance team while also being proactive in regulatory relations.

Our commitment to compliance

As the team expands, it’s also specializing. The additions of individual BSA and AML experts will allow Antoinette to assume full time duties as our Chief Compliance Officer while Karen Gifford will leverage her network to focus on external regulator relationships as Special Advisor of Global Regulatory Affairs.

“As a company operating at the intersection of technology and finance, it’s imperative that we intimately understand our role as an innovator in a developing space,” Antoinette O’Gorman, Chief Compliance Officer at Ripple Labs, said. “Not only do we have the responsibility to uphold the rules and regulations of an industry, we have a responsibility to set the right example,” she added. “We don’t take this lightly.”

Antoinette has spent over 15 years as a compliance professional for banks with a focus on anti-money laundering (AML) issues, recently serving as an AML consultant with Promontory Financial Group. As Chief Compliance Officer, she oversees Ripple Labs’ day-to-day regulatory needs, developing and implementing AML and compliance strategies as we bring new products to market.

Engaging with regulators

But beyond the day to day, it’s also important to keep in mind the bigger picture at a critical juncture in which innovation is advancing at a rapid pace. Understandably, regulations and government will play a key role in shaping the future of the industry.

“It’s important to consider the government’s role when it comes to the Internet of Value,” Karen Gifford, Special Advisor for Global Regulatory Affairs at Ripple Labs, said. “The world that my children grew up in wouldn’t exist if there hadn’t been significant government engagement in building the Internet. So if we’re going to see the productive development of the Internet of Value, we’re going to need a genuine collaboration between government and industry.”

Karen has worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Karen’s primary responsibility is to participate in relevant regulatory conversations concerning Ripple. She recently returned to San Francisco after a fruitful trip to Europe where she was encouraged by the level of engagement by bank regulators abroad.

Department developments

Ripple Labs has steadily been building out the team. Recently, we welcomed Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) Investigations Manager Carolyn Dicharry and BSA Manager Mike Bombace to the team.

Carolyn has a wealth of experience in the industry, having worked at Wells Fargo and money transfer firm Sigue Corporation, where she managed the AML programs of over 300 money services business agents. At Ripple Labs, she manages AML transaction monitoring, investigations, and Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) filings processes.

Mike joins us from Citi where he was the Global AML Advisory for New Payment Method Products. As BSA Manager at Ripple Labs, he is responsible for managing BSA program requirements including our Customer Identification Program (CIP), customer due diligence (CDD), AML training, and control testing.

We’ve also continued our ongoing engagement with regulators around the world. Last month, Ryan Zagone, Director of Regulatory Relations at Ripple Labs, was elected to the Federal Reserve’s Faster Payments Task Force Steering Committee where he will work with industry members to engage stakeholders in payments and advance the vision outlined in the Fed’s January report.

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