The Alessa Engineering team regularly makes updates and improvements to the Screening Algorithm in order to stay on top of the latest trends in fighting financial crime as well as to take advantage of the latest technologies available to help your organization stay at the leading edge running your compliance organization.
- We stand behind the updates that are performed. Thorough testing is performed in advance to ensure the results that come back are accurate and valid.
- Regular updates to the Screening Algorithm should be an expectation you have as part of the service that you're subscribed to.
- Typically, organizations can expect to see a 5-10% one-time spike in hits being returned as a result of an algorithm upgrade. These increased hits are usually due to the enhanced screening and matching that each incremental upgrade is able to perform.
- Prior to an algorithm update, your organization will be informed and release notes will be published to make you aware of the upcoming changes.
- Algorithm updates are not optional and are applied to all customers hosted in the same data center simultaneously.
- On occasion, we do see organizations with large one-time spikes. This is usually due to specific data inconsistencies, nuances of a clients data-set, clients they service, as well as screening thresholds that are set in the configuration of Alessa.
There are three factors contributing to why your organization may see a large spike:
- Improvements to the algorithm make it "more powerful" and more accurate. Meaning, some matches that were seen before will not come back and some new matches will come in. The net effect of this in layman's terms is that after an algorithm update it may be time to look at the screening thresholds you have configured. Your configured match threshold prior to the upgrade, with your specific data, may not work out to the same volume of alerts coming through post upgrade. The extra hits are still valid but in some ways come through as if your thresholds were lower or higher pre-upgrade.
- As an analogy, think of the screening algorithm as a pipe and your thresholds as a spigot that controls how much water flows through the pipe. If the water pressure in the pipe is increased or decreased without adjusting the valve, more or less water will come through the spigot based on the pressure in the pipe behind it even though the spigot might still be only 75% open.
- It is possible that your organization had a large portion of your matches that were very close to but just below your current match threshold. For example, if your screening threshold to generate an alert is 90% and you have a large set of data matching at 89%, 88% etc. it is possible that a large percentage of hits that were on the bubble of matching your threshold (but weren't quite there) suddenly became a hit based on the update.
- Your data is unique to your organization. Changes in the world, the conflict in Ukraine, the data being sent to the system, new techniques people use to circumvent sanctions, etc. can all contribute to the results coming across because of the upgrade. As mentioned at the start of this article, we stand behind the hits being presented in the system.
If you still have questions:
- Reach out to your account rep and we can schedule a discussion to clarify anything or see how the above points may have impacted your organization.
- Always feel free to contact the team using the "help" widget in the lower-right of this screen.