SWIFT means several things in the financial world
A secure network for transmitting messages between financial institutions;
A set of syntax standards for financial messages (for transmission over SWIFT Net or any other network)
A set of connection software and services allowing financial institutions to transmit messages over SWIFT network.
Under 3 above, SWIFT provides turn-key solutions for costumers, consisting of linkage clients to facilitate connectivity to the SWIFT network and CBTs or ‘computer based terminals’ which members use to manage the delivery and receipt of their messages. Some of the more well-known interfaces and CBTs provided to their costumers are:
Alliance Access (SAA) and Alliance Messaging Hub (AMH) are the main messaging software applications by SWIFT, which allow message creation for FIN messages, routing and monitoring for FIN and MX messages. The main interfaces are FTA (files transfer automated, not FTP) and MQSA, a WebSphere MQ interface.
There are four key areas that SWIFT services fall under in the financial marketplace: Securities, Treasury & Derivatives, Trade Services and Payments & Cash Management.