Professional Designation Course I
Bank Secrecy Officer Compliance Program

Audience: AML/BSA Compliance Professionals, Auditors, Consultants, Students, Analysts, Government, Law Enforcement, Legal, and others involved in BSA/AML

Level I: Beginner to Intermediate. The course is also for the more seasoned BSA individual that seeks a well-known professional designation through the AMLA.

Pre-requisite: Working in the field of compliance, legal, or a student. Must be a member of the AMLA (membership is free).

Duration: Self-Study Course. There are no travel costs or valuable time spent away from the office. Must complete entire program and test within 90 calendar days.

Program Purpose: The certification program is for any professional that has a need to learn the role of a BSA Compliance Officer; including how to develop a successful compliance program. The program content includes excerpts from the FFIEC BSA/AML examination manual and also includes years of best practices and input from experts and leaders in the field of BSA/AML. The material in this program will help you develop and implement an effective BSA/AML compliance program.

Course Logistics

Cost: AMLA Members: $550.00/$620.00 per program. Group discounts are available for 5 or more programs. Contact Mary Meile for more pricing.

Additional Options: Purchase individual training lessons in a recorded webinar format with PowerPoint presentation. You may purchase all 11 lessons for $550.00. The lessons are an overview and should not be a substitute for the entire program content.

Credits: Earn 13 hours of credits


Delivery of Material: The course content manual will be delivered within 10 days of receipt of funds.

You may request the course content in PDF instead of a manual. No additional cost.

Credit Card: on-line product store at Purchase Program.

Mail: Check payable to The Anti-Money Laundering Association, 127 W. Fairbanks Ave., Suite 105, Winter Park, Florida 32789.

Upon satisfactory completion of the course and testing, you will receive the professional designation certificate for a Certified Bank Secrecy Officer-I (CBO-I).

Examination: A comprehensive test has been developed and will require a passing grade of at least 80% out of 100% to obtain the professional designation of a Certified BSA Compliance Officer-Level I. The test consists of 50 multiple choice questions which count for 75% of the total score (1.5 points for each question) with the remaining 25% for the SAR case study and narrative, and must be taken with a proctor.

One week prior to the completion of the 90 days you must contact Mary Meile at to schedule your test date and time. A test will be e-mailed to you in a PDF format along with the SAR case study. As soon as the test and case study are e-mailed the timing to complete the exam begins. You are allowed a 2 hour window to complete the exam and case study. The test and SAR Narrative are to be scanned and returned back to our office via e-mail within the required time specified.

Each participant will be allowed to re-take the exam one time. The cost is $50.00. The re-take must be completed within 30 calendar days of the last exam date. If you do not pass the re-take then you will be required to pay the full cost of the CBO program. The same test will not be offered with a new CBO self-paced program.

Re-Take Examination: Each participant will be allowed to re-test for a minimum cost of $50.00. The re-take must be completed within 30 calendar days of the last exam date. If you do not pass the re-take then you will be required to pay the full cost of the CBO program. The same test will not be offered with a new CBO self-paced program.

Professional Designation Requirements: To use the professional designation of CBO-Level I (Certified Bank Secrecy Officer) you must be an active member of the AMLA and may use the designation in your title, on business cards, and correspondence.

Annual Credits: You will be required to maintain and submit 12 credit hours of BSA/AML related training per year from any recognized organization of your choice.

Annual Renewal Fee: The cost to renew is $75.00 per year. The annual renewal date is January 2nd. A late fee of $25.00 will be charged if payment is not received within 5 days of the due date. Please send in your renewal payment with your continuing education credits of 12 hours. You may pay online at our AMLA Product Store using a credit card. Simply click on the product CBO Annual Renewal Fee Price: $ 75.00.

Contact Information: You may request the material by sending an e-mail to

Course Content Outline

Lesson 1-Legal Framework

  • Overview of BSA Regulations and Related Laws
  • BSA Requirements
  • Recordkeeping Requirements
  • Exemptions, CTR, Monetary instruments, wire transfers, SARs, etc.

Lesson 2-Risk Assessment

  • What is a Risk Assessment? Why? How?
  • Preparation Best Practices
  • Sample Risk assessment
  • OFAC Risk Assessment

Lesson 3-BSA/AML/OFAC/CIP Program

  • How to Develop a Compliant Program
  • Internal Controls
  • Compliance Officer Role and Responsibility
  • Training Program
  • SAR Committee
  • Board Reporting
  • Customer Identification
  • Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

Lesson 4-Independent Audit

  • Requirements
  • Qualifications
  • Frequency
  • Engagement Letter Musts

Lesson 5-Penalties & Common Audit Findings

  • Recent Enforcement Actions
  • Penalties for Non-Compliance
  • Best Practices for Training on Penalties

Lesson 6-AML Monitoring

  • AML Monitoring Approach, Policies, and Procedures
  • An Effective AML Monitoring Program
  • Why and Who Should you Monitor/Frequency
  • Methods of Monitoring: Automated and Manual or Combined
  • Steps after You have Identified Suspicious Activity
  • Risk Profiles

Lesson 7-High Risk Customer/Entities/Accounts

  • Tips and Ways to Identify
  • NAICS Classification System-How to Use to Your Advantage
  • Monitoring Customers
  • Suspicious Activity versus High Risk

Lesson 8-Law Enforcement and 314a & b

  • Information Sharing with Law Enforcement
  • Subpoena’s & Administrative Requests

Lesson 9-SARs

  • Requirements
  • SAR Writing & Narrative Best Practices

Lesson 10-The Examination

  • Preparation
  • What to Expect
  • How to Handle Material Audit Findings

Lesson 11- Third Party Vendors

  • What is Your Responsibility?
  • Compliance
  • Contracts
  • Other Important Information to Know


  • Examination Review Questions