Anti-Fraud Education

Standardizing nationally, expanding globally

By Mary-Jo Kranacher, MBA, CFE, CPA

Fraud Edge

Fraud is a universal problem that threatens the very underpinnings of business and government across the globe. While many professionals in the United States scramble to keep up with accounting changes mandated by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Statement on Auditing Standards No. 99 "Consideration of Fraud in Financial Statements," our international counterparts face similar challenges. In fact, our European neighbors have their own version of Enron - they call it Parmalat.   

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has been hard at work seeking to establish a convergence of international accounting standards to ensure the reliability of financial statements. This environment has significantly increased the European Union's preoccupation with financial transparency and fraud detection. If future accountants and business leaders are to fulfill the public's expectation of them to detect and deter fraud, institutions of higher education must prepare students accordingly. Throughout the U.S. and abroad changes are underway, but we must make progress continuously to keep up with the ever-changing fraud landscape.

U.S. colleges and universities are recognizing the need for anti-fraud education and are increasingly responding to that demand. In 1999, only 20 out of approximately 900 accounting programs offered a course in fraud examination. There are now approximately 250 accounting programs offering some fraud education, largely as a result of the ACFE's Higher Education Initiative. The Higher Education Initiative provides colleges and universities with free videos, PowerPoint presentations, CDs and DVDs, as well as professional development for full-time faculty at accredited institutions, to enhance anti-fraud education worldwide. The value of these goods and services is estimated at $800,000 each year.





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