Catch It if You Can: Fraud Prevention Tips for CPAs by Storied Ex-Con Man

Sarah Woodman, Global events journalist
October 02, 2012 /

CPAs who want to prevent fraud and gain insight into the minds of scam artists can turn to the man the FBI uses to train investigators: Frank Abagnale, whose exploits as a young swindler were portrayed in the memoir, Hollywood film and Broadway play, “Catch Me If You Can.”

Abagnale will lead an Oct. 11 webcast, “The Art of the Steal: An Interview with Frank Abagnale,” sponsored by the American Institute of CPAs. Keith Slotter, CPA/CFF, a fraud prevention expert and former assistant director of the FBI Training Academy, will also speak during the two-hour online event.

Abagnale’s lectures have drawn rave reviews. Tom Hanks, who starred as Abagnale’s dogged pursuer in the 2002 Steven Spielberg movie about the ex- imposter’s life, has said his talks “may be the best one-man show you will ever see.” In the webcast, Abagnale will walk participants through various tricks of the trade and discuss emerging trends in fraud prevention and detection.

Although he has served as a respected financial fraud consultant for decades, Abagnale took a different path from age 16 to 21. He became notorious for skillfully impersonating a Pan Am Airways pilot to cop free flights, passed himself off as a doctor and a lawyer, and claims to have forged more than $2.5 million in bogus checks before authorities caught up with him in France.

After serving five years in prison, Abagnale agreed to work with the FBI to train white-collar crime investigators and began a lengthy career advising banks and other financial institutions on secure documents.

CPAs who participate in the webcast are eligible for up to two continuing professional education (CPE) credits. AICPA members qualify for a discount.


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