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Criminal Justice Articles

Economic Crime Investigator career options

Economic crimes account for approximately $200 billion dollars in losses and other costs annually in the United States. While the individuals who commit these crimes are not physically dangerous or violent in nature, they do present their own problems to the society of the United States. Many different career options are available to the economic criminal investigator who goes after these criminals, ranging from private companies to large public organizations and law enforcement agencies. An individual in the economic crime investigation field may choose to pursue a career in the corporate world as a corporate investigator.

This position entails the individual working as an employee of a company or corporation and monitoring its external and internal economic affairs. Internally, the investigator monitors employee use of spending accounts, checking for abuses and illegal charges to the company accounts. These fraudulent charges account for high overhead and an increase in losses for the company. The economic investigator is the first line of defense against this kind of abuse. The investigator will also seek out and monitor employee drug use and the procedures involved in termination or suspension. External investigations deal with protecting sensitive company assets such as stocks, information on customer accounts, and company trade secrets.

Private investigation is an option for any criminal justice investigator and can encompass a variety of tasks and services. Private economic investigators utilize surveillance and monitoring technologies to find and detect criminal activity. This technology is an integral part of crime detection and can lead to the discovery of criminal activity in an area not thought to contain such activity. The findings of the private investigator are turned over to the hiring party, either an individual or company, who can then proceed to seek criminal charges and/or civil charges.

An economic crime investigator may be employed as a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Agent, working to solve domestic crimes. The FBI uses these individuals in the acquisition of information on identity theft, investor fraud, laundering of money, or any other white collar crimes. Economic investigators take assignments from their field offices and perform the tasks necessary to obtain a conviction or sufficient evidence for arrest. The information found by the FBI agent is turned over to another federal agency to carry out the legal proceedings and arrests for the suspects. Working as a FBI Agent, an economic crime investigator will need to be further trained in firearms and conflict resolution and undergo rigorous testing both mentally and physically.

Internal auditing is another option for economic criminal investigators. The investigators who work in this area provide internal data and research to determine if company employees are committing theft or fraud within the company. These individuals review and monitor company documents, records and digital transactions for discrepancies that may lead them to believe malicious activity has taken place. These employees will also provide a prevention plan or system to stop fraud and internal theft from being committed.

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