Posts Tagged ‘terrorism’
Big cheeses at HSBC are going to face a Congressional committee next week. The US government are trying to stop banks moving money through countries including Iran, Cuba and Sudan. Basically, money is being laundered through the finance system, which is nice to know after the banks went power-mad and caused a recession, not to mention the whole Libor-rigging scandal.
HSBC are the only British bank with a network in America and there looks like there’s going to be some huge fines handed out.
Stuart Gulliver, HSBC’s chief executive, told staff yesterday that “between 2004 and 2010, our anti-money laundering controls should have been stronger and more effective and we failed to spot and deal with unacceptable behaviour,” adding “it is right that we be held accountable and that we take responsibility for fixing what went wrong”.
HSBC have confessed that some of these investigations focus on historical transactions with “Iranian parties”. Basically, America and the EU are trying to make it difficult for Iran to fund its nuclear reactor programme. The Congressional committee said they will be using HSBC as a case study to look at “the money laundering and terrorist finance vulnerabilities created when a global bank uses its US affiliate to provide US dollars, US dollar services and access to the US financing system to high-risk affiliates, high-risk correspondent banks and high-risk clients”.
So there you have it. A bank, basically being accused of helping terrorism. That’s nice isn’t it?
The world just got a little scarier. There has been a further development in the story where a security guard had (correctly) stopped a ‘father’ from photographing his ‘child’ with his mobile phone in the Braehead shopping centre near Glasgow. As you may recall, the act of photography was a breach of Braehead law, and when police were called, it was revealed that the ‘father’ could actually have had his mobile confiscated under the Prevention of Terrorism Act.
Now Capital Shopping Centres, who own Braehead and 10 other similar retail Xanadus around the land, say that customers WILL be able to take photographs in all of their locations. This appears to follow the appearance of a Facebok page, named ‘Boycott Braehead’, which gained about 20,000 ‘likes’, no doubt all from blood-thirsty fundamentalists.
Staff at the centres will no longer try to prevent families and friends from taking snaps of each other, although security guards will still be told to approach anyone acting suspiciously. We hope that covers four-year-olds who are eating ice creams (see picture). You can never be too careful.
Sounds peculiar, but the Financial Services Authority (FSA) have said that during 2008, RBS and its subsidiaries (Nat West, Coutts & Co. and Ulster Bank) failed to check if customers were on the Treasury’s sanctions lists.
As a result, the FSA decided that this resulted in an “unacceptable risk” of RBS facilitating the financing of terrorism.
“The involvement of UK financial institutions in providing funds, economic resources or financial services to designated persons on the sanctions list undermines the integrity of the UK’s financial services sector,” said Margaret Cole, the FSA’s director of enforcement and financial crime, to the Beeb.
“By failing to screen relevant customers and payments against the HM Treasury sanctions list, RBS group left itself open to the risk that it was facilitating terrorist financing.”
The FSA also noted that, during this period, the RBS group had handled more foreign payments than any other bank in the UK.
The fine would have been more than the £5.6m it stands at today if the bank had not admitted its failings. If they’d swept it under the rug, it would have been £8m, according to the FSA.
Another day, another tale of a bank acting like a complete wankbag.
Ladies and gentlemen, we don’t know what to say. It seems we’ve nowhere left to go, we’re out of options, so we’ll step forward and admit it – Bitterwallet are terrorists. Fact.
You see, Andy’s a grumpy twat who can’t abide his neighbours and so prefers not to talk to them. Mof shuts the curtains in the living room when he’s watching The Old Grey Whistle Test on the widescreen tv, and I like to pay for stuff down the shops with cash rather than a debit card because I’m up past my eyes in debt. See? Bang to rights. Based on this evidence, you should contact the authorities immediately and tell them we’re planning to kill someone.
The thing is, we’re not even taking the piss. This is a recorded promo taken from talkSPORT, the national radio station for white van drivers:
We’ll be honest, we haven’t listened to talkSPORT ourselves to verify the ad for fear of self-harming as a consequence, but we’ve confirmed similar messages have been broadcast on other London-based radio stations. (Nor are we advocating the views of the website that posted the YouTube video, since it talks of shadow organisations and “the world moving towards global centralised governance” – it all sounds a step away from Icke)
Concern about suspicious activity is one thing; insisting everyone play citizen spy and report neighbours who enjoy their privacy is quite another. Remember London’s Orwellian surveillance posters? Even a the crime of being a photographer in a street is a step too far. Going out in public appears to pose a security risk, but if you stay at home and don’t give up your right to privacy, you’re a terrorist!
It’s still a little ambiguous, however; are they suggesting terrorists can go undetected by making small talk, opening their curtains and applying for a credit card? Let’s hope they never work that out. And thank the lord companies don’t give away credit cards like lollypops, eh?
There’s more helpful information for spotting a terrorist on the Metropolitan Police website:
Terrorists need to travel – Meetings, training and planning can take place anywhere. Do you know someone who travels but is vague about where they’re going?
Yes. Men who are having yankee doodle in the Premier Inn at Grantham with somebody other than their wife.
Terrorists need communication – Anonymous, pay-as-you-go and stolen mobiles are typical. Have you seen someone with large quantities of mobiles? Has it made you suspicious?
Yes. Mobile phone salesmen have large quantities of mobiles. And men who are having yankee doodle with somebody other than their wife usually have more than one phone.
Terrorists use computers…
It’s you! You’re using a computer, you’re a terrorist! Christ almighty, where’s my phone? What’s that number I have to call, the one on the Metropolitan Police website? Now I’m using a computer – I’m a terrorist too! Fuck!
In yet another confirmation that the UK is carefully shuffling its way to an Orwellian manifest destiny it has been announced passports or other offical identification will be required when purchasing pre-paid mobiles. Presumably your national ID card would suffice.
The purpose of this new national register is to add the info into the existing terrorism and surveillance database. Apparently pre-paid mobiles are used in terrorist attacks and god damn it we aren’t tracing those 40m prepaid mobiles. The Times Online article nails it:
The pay-as-you-go phones are popular with criminals and terrorists because their anonymity shields their activities from the authorities. But they are also used by thousands of law-abiding citizens who wish to communicate in private.
Imagine – prepaid mobiles are also used by law abiding citizens wishing to communicate in private! So by default they are used by criminals and terrorists but a few people also use them to talk about Heroes, when their train is coming in and where to meet for a pint.
The loopholes in the scheme appear to be obvious. We give up our data and our privacy and the terrorists simply do their nefarious prepaid mobile shopping on eBay.