Compliance professionals from 41 countries put anti-money laundering (AML) work as the top issue ahead of terrorist financing, internal fraud, identity theft and insider trading, Tonbeller said.
The importance placed on AML reflects a host of national and international efforts to ramp up the fight against the crime, such as the European Union's third AML directive, which is currently being introduced across the continent, the company added.
It said inspection work by the Financial Action Task Force had also created fresh impetus for national regulators to close the loopholes in their system and introduce more stringent AML requirements.
Reputational risk was found to the top motivation for ensuring an institution was not affected by financial crime, Tonbeller found.
In addition, regardless of their individual country's regulatory requirements, 91 percent of the professionals questioned said there was business value in adopting a risk-based approach to fraud management.