Feeds

Outsourcing fingered as UBS cops £30m fine

Rogue trader should have been spotted in outsourced report

Seven Steps to Software Security

The perils of outsourcing have again come under the spotlight after regulators investigating the $US2.3bn loss at Swiss bank UBS pointed to key risk management failings at a third party provider based in India.

The FSA and Swiss regulator FINMA launched a joint investigation into UBS in September 2011 after it came to light that rogue trader Kweku Adoboli had incurred huge losses because he was allowed to make unauthorised trades from the London office of the bank.

The FINMA report (via PTI) explains that the bank’s operations team was responsible “for ensuring the timely confirmation of trades with deferred settlement terms”. These trades were listed on the “T+14 report” maintained by an unnamed outsourcing provider.

The report goes on to reveal that one of the main ways Adoboli hid the true risk exposure of his activities was by generating fictitious trades with deferred settlement dates on the Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) desk where he worked.

It added the following damning conclusion:

Deferred settlement trades should have been identified on the T+14 report. However, this report was non-operational between May and November 2009, and from November 2010 to September 2011 shortly before discovery of the Loss)…

The purpose of the T+14 report was to identify deferred settlement trades, as these posed a greater risk to the Bank than trades settling within the usual T+3 cycle. The importance of this report was not understood. The report failed twice, for extended periods of time, and the second failure of the report went unnoticed by UBS for approximately 10 months.

Although the outsourcing provider is clearly not solely to blame for what happened at the bank, its failings are painted as contributing factor and will call to mind other recent high profile cases from the financial world.

Back in August, New York State Department of Financial Services accused Standard Chartered of hiding $US250bn worth of secret transactions with Iran.

In a damning report, it blamed the UK bank for outsourcing key OFAC compliance processes to Chennai “with no evidence of any oversight or communication between the Chennai and the New York offices".

HSBC also came under scrutiny earlier in the summer after a US probe found issues with its own “offshoring reviewers in India”, who failed to spot issues regarding compliance with money laundering rules. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.