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New Pega Smart Investigate Features Help Banks Speed Financial Sanction Reviews

Out-of-the-box workflows automate payment investigations and help keep banks in compliance

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – November 8, 2022 – Pegasystems Inc. (NASDAQ: PEGA), the low-code platform provider that builds agility into the world's leading organizations, today announced enhancements to Pega Smart Investigate™ making it easier for banks to manage financial sanction investigations. For the first time, banks can now automate the process directly from their Swift-based exceptions management software with out-of-the-box workflows – saving investigators valuable time while reducing the risk of errors and noncompliance.

Recent world geopolitical events have led to an increase in economic sanctions, which aim to block transactions linked to illegal activities such as terrorism, drug trade, or human rights violations. Enforcement of these sanctions largely falls on financial institutions, which are now burdened with a significant rise in new cases. These complex investigations typically take place over email, phone, and other free-form channels outside of the bank’s core exceptions platform. This not only lengthens the time to resolution, it can also result in costly manual errors and make compliance tracking more difficult. 

Pega Smart Investigate is the only payment exceptions solution on the market that provides pre-built Swift-based workflows to facilitate more efficient information requests for financial sanctions investigations. Pega automates the process from end-to-end using the same Swift messaging standards that banks already use to securely communicate with each other. As a result, payment exceptions teams can realize:

  • Faster resolutions: With intuitive authoring, dynamic templates, and enhanced inbound request processing, Pega can help reduce resolution time from weeks to days. 
  • Fewer manual errors: Pega automates many aspects of the investigation process, helping banks avoid mistakes that can result in significant fines.
  • Increased compliance: By keeping the process and data gathering within the core exceptions software, banks can more easily audit the process with a documentation trail to meet compliance standards.

In addition to the new sanctions investigation processes, Pega has introduced additional features to Pega Smart Investigate to drive further efficiencies, including:

  • Event visualizer: This new feature helps payment investigation specialists easily digest key events in the payment lifecycle in a single view to quickly understand underlying transaction issues.
  • Regional and domestic payment exceptions: Traditionally used to investigate cross-border payments, banks can now extend Pega Smart Investigate’s support for ISO messaging to regional and domestic payment schemes as well. 
  • Accessibility enhancements: Expanding the use of descriptive icons, legends, user interface navigation, and accessible colors further aid users who require accessibility adjustments. 

Pega Smart Investigate is built on Pega’s low-code platform for AI-powered decisioning and workflow automation and is used by more than 25 of the world's largest global financial institutions. For more than 30 years, Pega has provided global banks with case management, workflow automation, and integrated support for Swift initiatives, including MT/FIN, SWIFTNet, ISO, CBPR+, gpi, and Swift case resolution. The scalable solution works across payment operations to manage transaction exceptions by automating the inquiry and exception management activities between departments involving wire transfer/payment and reconciliation operations.

The new 8.8 version of Pega Smart Investigate is available today. For more information on the new features, visit

Quotes & Commentary:
“New global financial sanctions are causing a notable spike in sanctions investigations that banks are forced to handle, bringing a new source of strain on their already stretched resources,” said Steve Morgan, industry market leader, banking, Pega. “We worked closely with some of the world’s leading financial institutions and standards organizations to provide the first out-of-the-box Swift-based solution that helps banks manage the thousands of new sanctions investigations opened every day. Now they can resolve cases faster, decrease costs, and reduce risk.”

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Lisa Pintchman
VP, Corporate Communications
[email protected]
+1 617-866-6022

North America

Sean Audet
Director, Corporate Communications
[email protected]
+1 617-528-5230

Ilena Ryan
Sr. Manager, Public Relations
[email protected]
+1 617-866-6722


Joanna Richardson
Director, Corporate Communications
[email protected]
+44 (0) 118 9651 660

Jon Brigden
PR & Communications Manager
[email protected]
+44 (0) 118 9398 584

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