Q&A with Ken Schulz, Program Head of BCIT Forensics’ Crime and Intelligence Analysis (CIA)-focused programs, all of which now offer online delivery options
Q: Why did BCIT Forensics develop a microcredential in Fraud and Financial Crime Investigation (FFCI)?
Ken Schulz: The stability of our organizations and our larger economy depends on our ability to root out and prevent financial crimes. Across the public and private sector, we know the financial industry requires professionals with these skills.
Q: What kind of students will be most interested in FFCI?
KS: This is a good way to get a condensed taste of the work of an investigator in fraud and economic crime. It’s fully online and just six short courses in a part-time format.
So, whether they’re already a professional in banking or finance or law enforcement who is trying to build expertise in a new area, or they are considering a career change, this is a manageable place to start building this essential skill set for anyone across Canada.
“There is definitely a great sense of satisfaction in preventing financial harm to Canadians.” -Ken Schulz, Program Head, BCIT Forensics Crime and Intelligence Analysis
Q: How will organizations benefit from professionals with these skills?
KS: Experienced instructors who have successfully completed investigations teach the investigative and analytical techniques covered in this microcredential. Techniques include forensic accounting strategies, data mining, forensic interviewing, and bank account transaction analysis. These types of analyses are used in both criminal and civil court.
Businesses and government agencies need employees who have this knowledge to be able to begin, continue, and complete investigations in a timely manner. There is job security and multiple opportunities throughout Canada for people with this type of knowledge and training.
Q: What do you think are some of the most important applications of these technologies?
KS: Data mining and intelligence analysis aim to find threats than an organization or business has an opportunity to identify, deter, and detect. Ideally this analytical work prevents the crime from occurring.
Once the crime has been committed, it is a race to investigate the event in as quick and cost-effective an investigation as legally possible. Investigative strategies and software applications are used to capture relevant evidence, and to help speed up the investigation process.
Q: What is exciting about this kind of work?
KS: There is definitely a great sense of satisfaction in preventing financial harm to Canadians. This type of work is challenging because the perpetrators of fraud and financial crime are also learning how to go undetected. We need capable guardians to help maintain trust in our financial system, which has many benefits for everyone.
The Fraud and Financial Crime Investigation Microcredential will be the start of many hours of learning new strategies, tools, and techniques to counter criminals.