Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Partners with the ACFE to Root Out Fraud and Corruption


Ganesh Thuraisingham
ACFE Partnership Manager – Asia-Pacific Region

Last month, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) announced its plans to collaborate with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) by joining the Law Enforcement and Government Partnership (LEGP) and certifying more than 400 MACC investigations officers with the CFE credential.

"To improve the knowledge and skills of our investigation officers in the operations section, in detecting corrupt practices, we will be cooperating with the ACFE," said MACC chief commissioner, Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed. He said corruption did not only involve accepting or giving bribes in the form of cash, but also covered other forms like fraudulent managing of accounts, which was difficult to detect roughly. "With such an accreditation program [the Certified Fraud Examiner credential], our investigation officers will be able to enhance their capability in identifying corrupt practices including wrongdoings related to taxes and claims."

MACC Chief Commissioner Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed and ACFE Faculty Member Allen Brown.

MACC Chief Commissioner Tan Sri Abu Kassim Mohamed and ACFE Faculty Member Allen Brown.

In the article, “MACC Seeks to be on Par with FBI” in the New Straits Times, MACC special adviser to the chief commissioner and head of forensics Datuk I.G. Chandran said the program was part of MACC's effort to move from witness-based probes to document-based probes. "As cases become more complex, we can no longer rely on witness statements. We need to have an understanding of financial documents to find evidence of graft, which can be well-hidden."

As the newly appointed Asia-Pacific Partnership Manager for the ACFE, I had the pleasure of sitting alongside Abu Kassim in Kuala Lumpur as he made his announcement at a press conference held at the International Internal Auditor’s Malaysia Corporate Fraud Conference. This type of partnership is something I am excited to be a part of and I hope to see more Asian law enforcement and government agencies step up to provide first-rate anti-fraud training to key staff in the future.

Although I have some background in auditing, I am understanding more and more about the fight against fraud. Last month, I also attended the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists' Asia-Pacific conference in Kuala Lumpur. I met with attendees of all different levels. It was interesting to hear from many about what they thought of the ACFE. To my surprise, not only were attendees familiar with the ACFE, they expressed how it is a well-respected professional organisation. Our recent event in Singapore, “Using Data Analytics to Detect Fraud,” was our largest 2-day course held outside of the U.S. with more than 90 participants, half of whom were not previously members of the ACFE.

To expand its international presence, the ACFE has come up with a variety of resources and events for members outside the U.S., which is constantly being reviewed and enhanced. For 2014, the ACFE has put together six 2-day seminars in Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, as well as the 2014 ACFE Asia-Pacific Fraud Conference in Hong Kong this November. Due to the success of the courses held in the first part of the year, we are already planning more events in the region for 2015. These are just a few things which the ACFE is currently doing to support the growth in the region (and don’t forget they hired me as its Partnership Manager).