At last, companies are listening

Fraud risk assessments

By Cynthia Harrington, CFE, CFA

To the great satisfaction of CFEs, more businesses are assessing their risks. The changes increase the demand for anti-fraud skills but possibly the greatest joy is now finally finding a receptive audience.

Michel Hagenaar, an executive at Kroll Inc., a risk consulting firm, tells the story of a client company's first attempts at risk assessment. During a meeting, the client outlined the work it had previously completed. Hagenaar's team members quickly realized that the client's accomplishments satisfied perhaps only 20 percent of what was needed. That meeting began at noon and concluded at midnight. It wasn't until the end of the second day that the team had ironed out a suitable risk assessment plan.

Any company's risk assessment process pleases anti-fraud professionals. The changes certainly increase the demand for fraud detection, prevention, and deterrence skills. But for most fraud examiners, the greatest joy is just finding a welcome audience that at long last realizes the need to assess its risk of fraud.

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