Thursday, May 28, 2009

Want job security? Fight fraud for a living...

The WSJ reported that the U.S. Justice Department is hot on the trail of U.S. companies that are bribing foreign officials in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. According to the journal, the law
is worded broadly enough that it's spawning an army of consultants, some of whom once prosecuted bribery cases for the Justice Department, who offer to interpret the gray areas.

"When you have a law that can result in criminal sanctions and jail time and that you can violate without actually realizing you're violating it, that's terrifying," said Alexandra Wrage, president of Trace International Inc., a Washington-based nonprofit specializing in antibribery compliance.

The FCPA consulting business is a huge growth area for the Big Four accounting firms and other forensic accounting practices and is an example of two forces that are leading to a need for more people who know how to detect corruption in business. One force is the trend in society and business of lower standards of ethical behavior. The other trend is the effort to counteract the first trend by increasing government regulation.

I personally don't see either trend reversing any time soon. As such, if you're looking for a promising career, this is an area to consider.

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