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Business, NGO Partnerships and Modern Slavery

Kimberley Cole
Kimberley Cole
Ex- Head of Solution Sales, Refinitiv

Business and NGOs are collaborating on the use of powerful data analytics to fight human trafficking and modern slavery hidden deep within global supply chains.An estimated 45 million people are held in modern slavery around the world today and illegal profits generated by forced labor amount to US$150 billion annually.

This means that both financial institutions and corporations may be unwittingly doing business with individuals or criminal organizations that exploit communities and individuals across the globe.

Power of data

Although modern slavery does leave a data footprint, it is difficult to detect and to report due to it being hidden deep within supply chains and business relationships.

However, the global anti-money laundering regime can be used as a powerful tool in the combating and disruption of human trafficking and modern day slavery as at some point the proceeds of trafficking and slavery may emerge in the financial system.

This is why we are collaborating with Liberty Asia on using data as a tool to detect and prevent illicit profits entering the financial system.

Training program

This partnership combines the on-the-ground knowledge and expertise from anti-slavery networks collated by Liberty Asia with the our technology and research capabilities and World-Check risk intelligence.

We’ve been working together to extend a training program for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that will:

  • Help create a better understanding of the impact and effectiveness of the use of data to tackle modern slavery.
  • Train analysts and investigators on how to gather this data.

These training exercises are aimed to equip NGO partners working in slavery and forced labor prevention, investigation and case management with key tools in harnessing open source information to combat the problem.

Existing training has already helped improve NGO skill sets, supporting a more consistent data-gathering methodology that aligns with other initiatives such as the Financial Action Task Force inclusion of human trafficking in the list of crimes involved in money laundering.

Former South Korean
Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon

Impact of collaboration

Gathering and sharing information on the intersection of global financial systems and supply chains is crucial.

The impact and insights from our collaboration with Liberty Asia has already resulted in hundreds of new profiles being added to the World-Check database.

World-Check customers now have access to more information to strengthen their own corporate due diligence programs on money laundering, slavery and other offenses.