“A mix of integrity, hard work and constant learning is the best policy.” This motto has driven Arpinder Singh, CFE, throughout his professional life and as president of the ACFE India – Mumbai Chapter since its formation in February 2011.
Why did you decide to enter into the anti-fraud field?
There were/are few anti-fraud professionals in the Indian sub-continent to effectively address the growing menace of complex frauds. As a chartered accountant and law graduate, I’ve worked in a number of countries and found it exciting and rewarding. India has become one of the fastest emerging economies due to evolving regulation and increased governance, so I realized that my skills would be apt to address this challenge in the larger interest of the industry.
What do you consider your greatest achievement to date?
I’ve helped the ACFE Mumbai chapter grow their membership of anti-fraud professionals by organizing chapter events, webinars, workshops and creating social networking platforms to exchange knowledge on a regular basis.
How has the CFE credential benefited your career?
This credential has directly impacted my career, as it is the foremost acknowledgment in the domain of fraud examiners. The long-term and consistent association is an extremely crucial element of this journey. It enables me to connect to a like-minded set of individuals, thereby enhancing my exposure even after earning the credential.
Why did you become active with the chapter and the board?
The change in crime trends in general and technology fraud in particular. As a fraud investigator I have worked on global assignments with both proactive and reactive work involving detection and recommending frameworks to deter fraud. This gave me insights on working with global conglomerates that have a presence in various sectors. The gap I saw in emerging countries like India was that there were not enough skilled people to address this issue while working in multi-jurisdiction scenarios. To address this gap some of us came together to form the chapter so we could give professionals in this area a forum to exchange views and enhance learning.
What has been a highlight during your time on the board?
Some of the high points have been:
· Reputed national and international lawyers and forensic accountants coming together to share views on transcontinental issues and how to work together towards shared goals.
· Executives and bankers discussing best practices and giving suggestions to top regulators in India on guidelines and policies.
This type of engagement is an intense and rewarding experience and is an incentive to all of us to keep going since these efforts are helping the industry at large.
What are the benefits of serving as a chapter leader?
The seemingly simple benefits are in fact very precious. For example, the chapter is an avenue to meet like-minded people, network with the who’s who of the fraud investigations industry and mentor aspiring fraud fighters. It has kept me connected with young as well as experienced professionals. The anti-fraud professionals remain abreast with the latest trends in frauds through the ACFE Mumbai chapter platform. I have also had the opportunity to meet and learn from other chapter leaders when I have visited other countries on work.
What goals would you like to help the chapter accomplish during your time on the board?
As an ACFE chapter, we are well placed in the center of financial activity in India. We want the Mumbai chapter to be a pocket of excellence where my fellow fraud examiners would exchange ideas, best practices and create value both professionally and personally. As there is a large demand for forensic services in India and not enough qualified professionals to fill that need, I would like to encourage fellow professionals to join this field and become a CFE. My hope is to do a global ACFE event in India where global and Indian forensic professionals can interact and learn from each other.
Do you have any advice for other chapter leaders?
Through my experience of leading the ACFE Mumbai chapter, I have realized there is so much more we can do to bring value to this profession. The more we connect, at all levels, the more enriching the experience we can have.
We must respond to all requests from budding forensic professionals on any queries to keep the interest alive. There must also be constant learning opportunities to keep professionals updated on the latest changes in our field.
What do you like to do for fun outside of work?
I enjoy sports and am particularly appreciative of cricket, as it is an apt example of how each player must bring his or her own expertise to the game to create the best possible chances for winning the match. This further helped me in strengthening the team. I am planning to organize a cricket tournament for ACFE Mumbai chapter members.