One problem faced by today’s banks is false alarms about money laundering. German start-up Hawk AI offers help in the form of artificial-intelligence software that can spot illegal practices with greater accuracy.
Hawk’s self-teaching algorithms are capable of spotting not only big-time crooks, but “money mules” who transfer small sums that on aggregate wash larger illicit sums. The company has five banks and financial service providers as customers, who pay for the service based on volume and share savings with Hawk.
The start-up was founded in Munich in 2018 by Tobias Schweiger and Wolfgang Berner. They came from a fledgling company dealing with credit-card billing that was bought out. Hawk presently employs twelve people from ten countries.
Star German investor Frank Thelen says, “If the software from Hawk AI is good, they have a real chance to become a relevant player in this sector.”