The IFA (Institute of Fraud Auditors, a not-for-profit organization) has been founded in 2001 as the National Professional Federation of Fraud Auditors in Belgium. As the number of complex fraud cases increases, there is a need to expand the group of experts that investigate disputes, litigations and suspicions of fraud. IFA adds value to the fraud combat by the public sector (courts and public authorities), the corporate environment and society at large.
IFA is the National Professional Federation of Fraud Auditors in Belgium. It develops and improves the quality of the profession of fraud audit and as a result contributes to justice and security in society. For that purpose IFA sets standards and monitors compliance to these standards. To do so the IFA enters into an open dialogue with policymakers and other stakeholders.
The IFA keeps abreast of developments through their educational program, seminars, round tables, publications and annual conference and as a member of the Security Platform of the Federation of Belgian Enterprises (VBO-FEB).
About Fraud Audit
Based on their financial-economical and audit backgrounds Forensic Auditors are involved in finding facts in order to resolving commercial or legal disputes, often a suspicion of fraud. As legislation and culture vary per country there exists not one single definition of Fraud Audit. In Belgium Fraud Audit is defined as follows:
Fraud audit is the activity that consists of gathering, verifying, processing, analyzing of and reporting on data in order to obtain facts and/or evidence - in a predefined context - in the area of legal/financial disputes and or irregularities (including fraud) and giving preventative advice.
IFA plays a key role in the training and continuing professional education of Fraud Auditors. The names of the accredited professionals are included in a register that is kept by IFA: Registered Fraud Auditors (RFA). This register contains more than 180 names in 2014.
All IFA-members have agreed to comply with the code of ethics that can be found on the IFA-website.
Our stakeholders - the corporate environment, the courts, policymakers, the academic world and other professions - can rely on the services offered by the IFA.
In order to achieve its mission IFA has defined five key strategic objectives:
1. Developing and offering a professional and legal framework for Fraud Audit.
The (international) developments in both the public and the private sector show the need to embed Fraud Audit in a clear framework. IFA will demonstrate this need and will assist policymakers in developing a legal framework for the Fraud Audit profession.
2. Broadening the social basis of Fraud Audit.
In order to be recognized as the representative of Fraud Auditors and to be able to act as such IFA takes (amongst other) the following initiatives:
- Entering into an open, structured and sustainable dialogue with other professions, institutes and public authorities
- Starting a sustainable dialogue with the academic world (universities, management schools)
- Further intensifying the contacts with policymakers and supervisory bodies in the political world, justice, public authorities and the corporate environment
- Attracting new members and sponsors.
3. Enhancing public-private co-operation.
The public-private mix of our educational program, the members group and the board of regents, makes IFA a unique organization. We have launched the first initiatives in the area of public- private co-operation in fraud combat and we will further expand our activities in this direction.
4. Developing a professional operational structure of IFA.
In order to support our high professional and operational standards IFA will find adequate housing and realize a professional secretary’s office.
5. Setting professional standards for Fraud Auditors.
IFA will realize on short notice the following objectives:
- Putting into place a disciplinary structure as stipulated in the articles of association
- Setting norms and standards especially in relation to investigations on individuals
- Developing a continuing education program.
Crossroads of Fraud Knowledge
In order to stay in the frontline of developments in society both the fraud experts and their stakeholders must get together. This includes the academic world since fundamental and applied scientific research is required on fraud schemes and criminal organizations, on the societal impact of fraud and the evolutions therein. The stakeholders must interact on the interdisciplinary crossroads of fraud knowledge.
IFA wants to build these crossroads. We will do so by sharing knowledge, organizing experts’ meetings, establishing educational programs and projects for fundamental and applied scientific research and by implementing a code of ethics. Thus IFA offers to society a pool of fraud experts.
For this to happen IFA needs support. Without the support from the corporate environment IFA will neither grow nor achieve its objectives. Sponsors, friends, stakeholders and other interested parties support IFA in achieving its mission. Force through synergy. Join us to participate.