What is SWIFT, which is being weaponised in Russia-Ukraine crisis?
Feb 25, 07:02

Russia is being threatened with being cut out of the SWIFT banking service. But what is SWIFT? The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications is essentially a messaging service, used by banks and other financial institutions, to enable money transfers, trading etc. For example, if a person in London wants to send money to someone in Kiev, he/she can go to a local bank and give the instruction using the banks' SWIFT ID numbers; the local bank will message the Kiev bank to credit the money. This service promises speed and security. Over this messaging service are overlaid other services such as business intelligence reports, sanctions compliance and fraud control.