Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist (ACFS)

Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist (ACFS)

The Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist learning programme will equip you, the counter fraud professional, with the skills and understanding to effectively prevent, detect and investigate fraud. The Cifas Fraud and Cyber Academy has been approved to deliver the ACFS and teaches a unique module Understanding Fraud and Fraudsters. The programme itself is accredited by the Counter Fraud Professional Awards Board (CFPAB) and has been approved by Northumbria University. 

Module details

You will learn how to:

  • Identify the roles and responsibilities of a counter fraud specialist.
  • Understand of fraud and fraudsters, the common types of fraud, fraud indicators and the theories that explain the motivation for the fraudster. ***Unique to Cifas***
  • Recognise the importance of having an effective counter fraud culture and be able to design counter fraud strategies to protect an organisation from the threat of fraud.
  • Understanding of the criminal legislation relevant to fraud and associated offending.
  • Understand the generic legislation that underpins investigations.
  • Understand the relevant legislation and procedures that impact on both the civil and criminal investigative process.
  • Recognise the intelligence gathering requirements, plan and undertake a fraud investigation in line with legislation and best practice.
  • Plan and undertake an effective investigative interview.
  • Analyse the requirements to produce a comprehensive case report and prepare a prosecution file.
  • Understand court, civil and disciplinary hearings in England and Wales and identify the requirements to prepare and give evidence.


Entry requirements

There is no requirement to have previous experience of counter fraud investigation. The ACFS programme is ideal for those starting out or looking to gain employment in the field, as well as those who want to formalise and improve their existing knowledge and skills

The programme is designed primarily for those undertaking investigations to a criminal standard, including undertaking interviews under caution, and therefore targeted at the public sector. If you are a not a public sector professional, we recommend you explore our Professional Certificates in Fraud Prevention and Fraud Investigation, which are developed with and designed for the corporate and private sectors.

Schedule & Teaching

The Academy is committed to flexible study and learning. Modules are delivered online, and our innovative learning management system Moodle allows learners to log in 24/7, from any device, to access resources and teaching and submit assignments. 

Each module of the ACFS is taught in one or two day blocks (with one exception of four days). Each day starts at 9.30am and ends at 4pm, with a 45 minute lunch break. There are approximately 15 teaching days in total, spread over five months.  


"The opportunity to learn and explore concepts of fraud both new and known were insightful. The tutors have a wealth of experience and knowledge and made learning easy and enjoyable. I have learnt so much and i am looking forward to putting it into practice."

"I thoroughly enjoyed the course, the instructors were clearly experts in their field, no question they could not answer and their delivery was fantastic. There was a lot to learn but the materials were available to download and takeaway so you have a good reference source for later. You couldnt ask for anything more, I went in with high expectations and these were exceeded. Thank you to the Academy and Ian and Mike for all your support and providing such a great course, I learnt a lot and came away with more than I had hoped."

"I have worked in Fraud Investigation for about 14 years for a Local Authority but coming on this course re-enforced some of my practices, corrected some of my practices and completely changed others. My confidence level is almost stratospheric."