Welcome to our first installment of “Your Security Career”! This month we look at a security career space that is rapidly growing: investigations.
Investigative careers are found in every industry sector.
While the function often resides within conventional corporate security department structures, organizations often have multiple investigative tracks overseen by different functions within the same company.
Do not limit your search for an investigative career to conventional corporations, though. Numerous opportunities exist externally with law firms, large and small investigative service providers and companies that support investigative activities and technical analysis. Large-member accounting services firms typically also have large investigative practices.
You can specialize and focus on one type of investigation.
Consider areas from this high-level list of investigative activities:
- Anti-Money Laundering (AML)
- Corruption: Conflicts of interest, bribery, illegal gratuities, and economic extortion
- Product Integrity: Counterfeit products, components, and raw materials
- Credit Card Fraud
- Due Diligence: Mergers and acquisitions
- Due Diligence: Vendors, suppliers, partners, and customers
- Employee Misconduct: Compliance, liability, and ethics
- Financial Statement Fraud: Net worth or net Income overstatements or understatements
- Fraudulent Disbursements: Billing, expense, payroll, check tampering, register tampering
- Fraudulent Disbursements: Insurance fraud
- Government Security: Intelligence matters with private sector organizations
- Employment Backgrounds: Individual or personnel
- Intellectual Property: Trademarks, copyright, confidential and trade secrets
- Legal Department Support: Inquiries, internal or external actions
- Management of Investigative Programs
- Property Theft Diversion and Misappropriation: Supply chain, distribution, false sales, and shipping
- Retail Loss Prevention
- Technical Forensics: Technologies, cyber, and data information systems
- Theft of Cash: Skimming, larceny, and write offs
What do you need to know to be successful in these diverse categories?
While each have varying experience and education requirements, they all likely require a deep understanding of governing laws, regulations, and other unique challenges including cross-border implications.
What are the salaries like for investigative professionals?
They vary widely from entry level roles to senior leadership positions. However, even at the individual contributor level, it is common to see compensation equivalent to that of some CSO jobs. These well-compensated roles typically conduct high-end, complex, and sophisticated investigations.
Technology coupled with expansion in data collection can reduce staff for many basic compliance and transactional investigative teams. However, the volume of investigations resulting from individual criminal activity, organized crime, terrorist organizations, state actors, unethical companies and internal opportunists continues to grow.
Often many of these addressed by the private sector and that creates a wealth of investigative career opportunities within organizations.
About Your Security Career
Every month SJN takes a deep dive into one of the functional areas that comprise the security profession. Each has a wide range of challenges that offer career growth, and our goal with this series is to broaden your horizon within each of these niche functions.
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