Financial Crimes Investigator Certificate

Featured Online Certificate Program

Financial Crimes Investigator
For More Information

As the struggle between profitability and risk management wages on, firms become more susceptible to financial crime. Newsworthy financial and accounting frauds over the last decade may have left the next generation of investors soured on many public markets. But accounting fraud is only a small part of financial crimes. In fact, just about 1 in 5 financial services firms experienced accounting fraud.1 Broader problems are asset misappropriation (i.e. embezzlement, which plagues 2 out of 3 businesses) money laundering, cybercrime and bribery.2 Economic crime is a huge problem in business and preventing it takes highly skilled professionals to combat it.

What is an Online Certificate in Financial Crimes Investigation?

The online Financial Crimes Investigation Certificate is a credential (typically around six classes) that provides graduates with the knowledge and tools to detect and combat financial crime.

Utica College offers an online Financial Crimes Investigator Certificate designed to prevent economic crime. The program consists of six courses (18 credit hours) related to financial crime and covers topics such as payment systems fraud, counter terrorism financing, money laundering and white collar crime. The certificate introduces students to forensic accounting and also utilizes cutting edge detection technologies including data mining, pattern recognition and link analysis. Students also help the prosecution of offenders by preserving and maintaining evidence.

What Kind of Jobs Can I Get with as a Financial Crime Investigator Certificate?

With a Financial Crime Certificate you will be qualified to work in the fraud prevention departments in a variety of private sector industries including retail, engineering and construction, financial services and insurance. Consulting opportunities should also emerge as organizations including government agencies and large corporations cost-effectively outsource their risk management.

Specific jobs include investigators, tax examiners, revenue and special agents and compliance officers. Insurance investigators examine various claims by policyholders to make sure there’s no evidence of fraud. They are responsible for identifying fraudulent activity such as pre-meditated incidents and overstating the damage from an auto accident.

Investigators perform surveillance which can be anything from monitoring the patterns of social media contacts to catching an injured claimant performing strenuous activity. Tax examiners and revenue agents work for the IRS to make sure taxes are being paid properly. Special agents work in law enforcement and in the FBI tracking down financial criminals and hackers. And compliance officers are employed in just about every private sector industry ensuring companies meet their regulatory requirements.

Engineering and construction, E&C and retailers are actively engaged in deterring fraud and financial crime in their business which is notoriously targeted by criminals. These types of businesses carry large amounts of inventory which are ripe for fraud. Construction sites are victims of some of the most egregious financial crimes.

With proper policies in place for subcontractors and vendors, these facilities and their assets can be better protected against financial crime. The majority of fraudsters in these industries are internal.

Financial services are the single most abused industry, with 45% of firms reporting economic crime.4 Yet, just 25% of those firms surveyed by PriceWaterhouse Cooper conducted annual fraud risk assessments.5

Banks infrastructure is constantly being probed by hackers and other criminals. The majority of fraudsters in these industries are external.

Criminal fraud investigators, insurance claims adjusters and examiners have median annual wages of about $60,000 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.6 Depending on your experience and level of education reached, you may be on the path for or Chief Compliance Manager (median salary, $93,400)  and Risk Manager (median salary $102,059).7,8

The Financial Crime certificate may be a good way for retired law enforcement to transition from the public to the private sector. They may continue working and enjoy supplemental income from consulting opportunities. Also, if you’re an I.T. professional in a stagnant position, a certificate in Financial Crime could push you into a more upwardly mobile career combating cybercrime.

How do I Choose the Right Certificate in Financial Crime Investigation?

Consider the time commitment involved in completing the certificate. Assess whether this can be done part-time while you’re working or whether you need to go full-time. The six courses of the certificate typically take about one year to complete. Also, consider the program’s cost and see if this is the right option.

Ask your admissions representative if their economic crime programs partner with industry organizations including the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists or the International Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Analysts.

Your financial crimes certificate should understand that a consequence of fraud isn’t always monetary. Intangible assets such as brand value and reputation can be eroded by economic crime. If you’re looking for an exciting career in fighting financial crime while advancing your career, consider the online Financial Crime certificate.

Featured Certificate: Financial Crimes Investigator