Your Banker is Not Your Friend

Hotels, motels and garden shops aside, no private businesses have come under as much pressure to cooperate in Big Brother’s war on privacy as your local banker. Governments around the world have gone to great trouble to gain access to your banking records. In order to bank in silence you must first be aware that in almost every developed country your friendly banker has been ordered by law to play detective. Like it or not, bank officers were long ago converted into unpaid government workers. Banks now routinely employ at least one individual who is responsible for tracking suspiciously large cash deposits. He is instructed to look out for large amounts of small bills in particular. If activity within any account exceeds what is “normal” this bank employee must recommend that his boss contact not the police, but the nearest tax office.
Many governments have passed new laws that turn money laundering into a crime, along the lines of aiding and abetting a criminal. In the few jurisdictions that still recognize freedom, banks have come to realize which way the wind is blowing. They have turned to so-called self-regulation in an attempt to put their own house in order before government bureaucrats get the urge to do it for them. As a result, internal procedures for client relationships have changed. Almost everywhere today all new clients are photographed whether they realize it or not, either on videotape or by a hidden still camera operated by a switch under the counter. In Switzerland, all banks, as well as almost all law firms, have installed taping equipment to record phone conversations. In the Swiss phone book, a small star next to the phone number designates that such equipment is connected.
Opening new accounts has also become more difficult because Ю is always required. Today, your new bank will often want to check your references or your background. Several banks, especially in Switzerland, refuse to accept American clients at all. If they do, they require that you sign a special waiver prepared just for US citizens. In effect, by signing you are relinquishing your right to bank secrecy. Simply depositing money has also become more difficult as many banks will no longer accept cash. All of these restrictions, explained in greater detail in the following part of this Report show how clearly your banker is no longer your friend. However, he is not the only individual who has become part of the ever growing government posse.
Your accountant, your lawyer and your stockbroker must also be added to the list of potential informants. In many jurisdictions, such individuals are personally liable for criminal prosecution if they have knowledge of asset concealment, tax fraud or other peccadilloes. In other words, if your own hired hands don’t turn you in they may be breaking the law! New regulations make these professionals in your home country little more than government agents. They are like Deputy Sheriffs. If you don’t want Sheriff Big Brother to know exactly what you are doing then for heaven’s sake, don’t tell the Deputy Sheriff!
These “professionals” are not on your side. They simply cannot be for fear of losing their licenses, their livelihood and possibly their freedom. As such, accountants and lawyers are the last persons you should trust with sensitive information or from whom you should seek advice on offshore matters. Instead, by following the advice given later in this Report, you will be able to set up your own offshore financial structures without putting yourself in jeopardy by telling any of Big Brother’s recently drafted agents what you’re up to.