BUS 504 Contemporary Business
February 24, 2013
Dr. Jason M. Barrett
Forensic Elite: Detective of Numbers
No one in the world likes a snitch. In the early 2000’s the urban campaign “Stop Snitching or Die” changed the face of whistle blowing in the United States (Masten, 2009). Neighborhood violence during the “Stop Snitching or Die” campaign increased as law abiding citizen cowered inside their homes as gun shots rang out feet away from their doorsteps (Masten, 2009). In corporate America companies faced huge financial lost as the “Stop Snitching or Die” theology spilled into boardrooms and accounting departments. The corporate world was not as brazen as the urban world killing anyone that help out law enforcement, but the results of company leaders keeping quiet about misconduct slowly murdered the American economic system. While corporate leaders played their hand at boardroom gangbanging by lying, stealing, and falsifying financial documents, the world would see snitching taken to a new level (Masten, 2009). The job of combing through those illegal financial documents would go to an elite set of men and women, called forensic accountant. Forensic accountants help America recover huge amounts of financial dollars by bring corporate leaders to justice who made illegal business decisions (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). Attributes of the Elite
Forensic accounting/accountant (FA) involves the application of accounting concepts and techniques to legal problems (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). “Initially, forensic accountants were used by government agencies, such as the CIA, the FBI and the IRS, to uncover and investigate fraud” (Ramaswamy, 2005, p. 2).With the recent economic downturn the profession of forensic accounting has seen a 200% increase since the Enron and WorldCom accounting scandals (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). In 2009 Davis, Farrell and Ogilby surveyed attorneys, certified public accountants (CPAs) and academics. 126 attorneys, 603 CPAs and 50 accounting/auditing professors participated in the survey (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). The purpose of the survey was to better understand the current perceptions of what it means to be an effective forensic accountant (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). According the survey CPAs listed the top five traits they found important when working in the field of forensic accounting. The traits are analytical, ethical, skepticism, inquisitive, and persistent. Analytical
Analytical is defined as separating something into component parts or constituent elements (Merriam-Webster's Dictionary and Thesaurus, 2012). A forensic accountant needs to be able to analysis every aspect of a situation. Being able to breakdown the situation into different component gives the FA the ability to analysis each component in more detail (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). If a FA is working a case and fails to analysis each component separately details about the case can be missed or over looked. In the world of business as it relates to the accounting department, being naturally analytical can be strength to help alleviate accounting misconduct (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). Ethical
Ethical is defined as conforming to accepted and especially professional standards of conduct (Merriam-Webster's Dictionary and Thesaurus, 2012). Ethics ranks high with FA’s because a FA has to be trusted to perform the duties of their job without being sway by any party other than the law (Davis, Farrell, & Ogilby, 2009). In corporate America ethics has taken a backseat to capitalism, politicians are paying for seats that the public decides who is to be elected them to. American’s today seemed program to choose money over honor. In the growing profession of forensic accounting where money is easily assessable ethics plays a large role in bring offenders to justice (Davis, Farrell,...