16th Year of Fraud Conference Sees Continued Increase in Turnout, Interest in Fraud Prevention

Nearly 700 People Attend First Day of Two-Day Conference

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Auditor of State Dave Yost speaks during the opening session of the conference on Tuesday, May 10.

Columbus – When Janice D’Alessandro worked on her first statewide Fraud Conference in 2002, about 115 people attended the training program offered through the state Auditor’s office. 

When the 2016 conference began this morning, almost 700 people packed the Columbus Convention Center ballroom to learn about emerging trends in fraud – including sessions on gangs and financial crime, charitable fraud, conducting forensic investigations and fraud involving mobile devices.

Auditor of State Dave Yost welcomed attendees to the Emerging Trends in Fraud Investigation and Prevention Conference, promising they would learn “the state of the art in protecting public integrity” from experts in state government and nationally. 

While the tools help, Yost – a former county prosecutor – said the root of any thorough investigation is verifying what you see and hear. “The ability and perseverance to ask ‘why’ is the first tool in the tool kit to identify fraud,” he said. 

Brandon Inscho, director of the state Auditor’s Public Integrity Assurance Team, credited Yost for elevating the Fraud Conference into such a must-attend event. 

“Auditor Yost has been aggressively pushing the need for us to bring our resources, our tools, to help communities and businesses fight fraud,” Inscho said. “It’s important to him. He’s made it a priority. And we have the specialization and expertise that few have.”

Yost believes the increased interest is partly the result of society’s view of government and business.

“There’s a growing sense out there that too much of our public sector is corrupt and not working in our best interests,” Yost said. “Part of the increasing interest in our conference is the strong desire to get corruption out of our city halls, our schools and our corporate board rooms – everywhere.”

This is the 16th year for the training program, a collaboration between the Auditor’s office, the Attorney General’s office, the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). The conference brings together hundreds of fraud-prevention professionals like accountants, attorneys and law enforcement officials to learn the latest developments in fraud and how to combat it. The Emerging Trends in Fraud Investigation and Prevention Conference features expert speakers like Jim Ratley of ACFE, Cybercrime reporter Brian Krebs, Walt Manning of Investigations MD, and Matthew Smith, president of Smith, Rolfes and Skavdahl Company, LPA.

Inscho said the conference has developed a reputation that makes it worthwhile for people to attend. The conference began at 8:30 today and runs through 4:30 Wednesday, May 11. Details on the conference sessions can be found here