Fonetic acquired by mobile surveillance tech firm VoxSmart

VoxSmart’s acquisition of Fonetic signals a move towards consolidation in the surveillance technology space.

VoxSmart has acquired the trading business of voice processing, compliance and surveillance technology provider, Fonetic, marking the first major move towards consolidation in the trading surveillance space.

VoxSmart, which specialises in mobile surveillance for major institutions including Bank of America Merrill Lynch and TP ICAP, said in a statement the deal was driven by recent high-profile investigations, including the WhatsApp scandal at KPMG and the prosecution of a VTB banker over deleted WhatsApp messages. 

Market demand for greater consolidation as well as integrated compliance and surveillance services also led VoxSmart to acquire the trading assets of Fonetic, which includes multilingual voice and e-comms surveillance, and intelligence tools such as the trade reconstruction engine. 

“We have seen time and time again the financial and reputational damage caused by un-monitored or ignored communications. Fixed line audio, mobile phones and messaging platforms like WhatsApp are seen as the weak spots in a bank’s surveillance capability, so are the first to be exploited by bad actors,” said Juan Manuel Soto, CEO of Fonetic.

“By pooling our talent and technology, clients will not only benefit from enhanced data integration, but also increased visibility of their trading activity, thanks to a comprehensive suite of communications surveillance and intelligence technology.”

Fonetic added that its voice processing and linguistic analysis services, such as chatbots and voicebots through natural language processing technology in European and Latin American markets, will remain with the firm.

“We have always worked closely with market participants to tackle global regulatory compliance challenges and we’ve seen overwhelming demand for multichannel and multilingual offerings that not only meet the communication surveillance needs of our clients but substantially ease their procurement and supply chain burden,” Oliver Blower, CEO of VoxSmart concluded.