Counter Fraud Professional Accreditation Board

The Counter Fraud Professional Accreditation Board (CFPAB) was created in 2001 from the merger of the National Counter Fraud Accreditation Board and the NHS National Professional Accreditation Board. In September 2019 Northumbria University took over the Secretariat function for CFPAB from the University of Portsmouth. 

The work of the Board is supported by Northumbria University’s Financial Crime and Compliance Research Interest Group. 

The CFPAB members include:

  • Department for Work and Pensions

  • Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)
  • Cifas
  • HM Revenue and Customs
  • City of London Police

The CFPAB covers the whole of the United Kingdom and its aims amongst other things are:

  • To establish and maintain professional standards by way of set syllabi in the delivery of a portfolio of approved professional training courses in the field of counter fraud work.
  • To actively promote professional training for counter fraud specialists and to work with organisations with a common interest in the development of professional training in this area.
  • To oversee and regulate the delivery of CFPAB approved training courses, taking into account the quality and effectiveness of the courses and the professional competency of trainers delivering them 
  • To provide professional accreditation to applicants who have successfully undertaken a CFPAB approved course

Awards

In 2016 the CFPAB began to align its awards with HM Government’s professional standards for counter fraud and latterly with the Counter Fraud Investigator Apprenticeship. The most popular CFPAB awards are:

  • Accredited Counter Fraud Technician (ACFTech) 
  • Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist (ACFS)
  • Accredited Counter Fraud Intelligence Technician (ACFITech)
  • Accredited Counter Fraud Intelligence Specialist (ACFIS)

The CFPAB also offer the following awards:

  • Accredited Counter Fraud Manager (ACFM)
  • Accredited Counter Fraud Trainer (ACFT)
  • Graduate Counter Fraud Specialist (GCFS)

As of January 2021 the CFPAB had made over 20,000 awards.


What is the difference between the most popular qualifications? 

The Accredited Counter Fraud Technician (ACFTech) is designed to develop counter fraud support personnel, such as technicians or analysts, and for anyone whose role it is to conduct non-complex investigations or provide support to larger, more serious case investigations.

The Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist (ACFS) is specifically designed for practitioners whose work roles are concerned with counter fraud and anti-corruption activities, including investigators, investigator managers and supervisors and internal audit staff.

The Accredited Counter Fraud Intelligence Technician (ACFITech) is specifically designed for new intelligence practitioners and intelligence support staff i.e. those whose roles require desk-based intelligence gathering activity in support to the provision of less complex intelligence cases or to provide support to larger, more serious intelligence case development.

The Accredited Counter Fraud Intelligence Specialist (ACFIS) is specifically designed for new operational/field intelligence practitioners, that is, those whose roles involve the use of RIPA and intelligence gathering methodologies for the exploitation of information and development of intelligence material and cases regarding counter fraud activities. 


What is the value of the CFPAB awards?

In the UK, CFPAB awards are commonly recognised as a benchmark for the attainment of professional skills and knowledge in the field of counter fraud. Nowadays, employers in both the public and private sectors frequently cite CFPAB awards as a mandatory requirement when advertising counter fraud roles.

In 2020 the University of Northumbria scrutinised the content of awards and recognised the Specialist awards are worth at least 40 credits at Level 4 of the Regulated Qualifications Framework within England, Wales and Northern Ireland (or 40 credits at Level 7 of the Scottish Credit and Qualification), that is, one-third of the first year (or second year within Scotland) of a university degree and that the Technician awards are worth at least 10 credits at this level. So, for example, the answer to the question: how does the ACFS compare to an NVQ Level 4 in Investigation, is they are both the same level.


How many hours of study does each award involve?

The National Qualifications framework dictates how many hours of study are expected for each unit of credit. For example, it is because the Specialist awards are said to be worth 40 credits of study at Level 4 that means we must suggest students need to study for 400 hours. 

In practice, the hours undertaken differs according to the student’s existing knowledge and understanding of the topic and their familiarity with study skills. For example, someone new to the field may need all the time to read and familiarise themselves with the range of new topics covered by each award. 

Who provides the counter-fraud training?

The CFPAB approve a range of providers who teach and deliver the content of the syllabi in their own way, while remaining strictly faithful to the core syllabus of any particular course. 

The learning materials of each provider are subject to scrutiny by the Northumbria University and the CFPAB has built in other quality assurance provisions, for example, each trainer must meet certain criteria.  

ACFS Professional Register and CPD

Please be aware the CFPAB is currently reviewing its CPD processes and as such all CPD reviews are suspended pending the outcome of this review. Further information regarding the new process will appear once the review is complete and its findings reported to the CFPAB Executive Board.

For any enquiries regarding the CFPAB please complete the below enquiry form.