• Step 4 - Pass the CFE Exam


    OverviewMan Looking at Computer


    Before earning the CFE Credential, you are required to pass the CFE Exam. The CFE Exam tests your knowledge of the four major areas that comprise the fraud examination body of knowledge:

    Fraud Prevention and Deterrence — tests your understanding of why people commit fraud and ways to prevent it. Topics covered in this section include crime causation, white-collar crime, occupational fraud, fraud prevention, fraud risk assessment, and the ACFE Code of Professional Ethics.


    Financial Transactions and Fraud Schemes — tests your comprehension of the types of fraudulent financial transactions incurred in accounting records. To pass Financial Transactions & Fraud Schemes, you will be required to demonstrate knowledge of the following concepts: basic accounting and auditing theory, fraud schemes, internal controls to deter fraud and other auditing and accounting matters.


    Investigation — includes questions about interviewing, taking statements, obtaining information from public records, tracing illicit transactions, evaluating deception and report writing.


    Law — ensures your familiarity with the many legal ramifications of conducting fraud examinations, including criminal and civil law, rules of evidence, rights of the accused and accuser, and expert witness matters.


    CFE Exam Format


    The CFE Exam is administered via computer and is available by download, or online using a web browser.

    The exam contains four sections; each section has 125 multiple choice and true/false questions, for a total of 500 questions.

    The CFE Exam is a closed-book and closed-notes exam.

    The CFE Exam can be taken at a time convenient for you.

    The exam has a number of controls to ensure integrity and each exam is generated from a master database. No two exams are exactly the same.


    To be eligible for the CFE Exam, you must be an ACFE member and have an approved CFE Exam application on file.

    The CFE Exam you take will correspond with the year/edition you are using to study. For example, if you’re studying with the 2015 CFE Exam Prep Course, U.S. Edition, you will take the 2015 CFE Exam, U.S. Edition.

    A particular CFE Exam is only valid for a period of two years after the release date. For example, the 2015 CFE Exam, U.S. Edition will be valid until December 2016. If the study materials or exam you have are expired, we will provide you with the most current version of the exam.



    CFE Exam Details


    Taking the CFE Exam
    Request Your CFE Exam Activation Key
    Entering the CFE Exam Activation Key
    Submitting the CFE Exam Activation Key
    CFE Exam Affidavit
    CFE Exam Results
    CFE Exam Retakes

    Taking the CFE Exam

    After entering your exam activation key, you have 30 days to complete all four sections of the CFE Exam and submit it for grading.

    Once you start a section of the exam, you must complete it.

    You are not required to complete all four sections in one sitting. In fact, we recommend only taking a section or two at a time.

    You must complete all four sections before submitting your CFE Exam for grading.

    You must pass all four sections of the exam within three consecutive attempts.

    A CFE Exam affidavit must be submitted for each submission of the CFE Exam.


    Requesting your CFE Exam Activation Key

    IF YOU STUDIED WITH THE CFE EXAM PREP COURSE

    1. Select Request Exam Activation Key within the course.
    2. An Exam Activation Key will be sent by email within 3-5 business days.

    If you studied with the Fraud Examiners Manual:

    1. You will receive the CFE Exam when your CFE Exam application is approved.
    2. Open your CFE Exam and select Request Exam Activation Key within the course.
    3. An Exam Activation Key will be sent by email within 3-5 business days.
    Watch a video demonstrating how to request your CFE Exam Key

    Entering the CFE Exam Activation Key

    Once you have requested and received your CFE Exam Activation Key:
    1. Open the CFE Exam software.
    2. On the home tab, select Enter Exam Key.
    3. Copy the Exam Activation Key from the email and paste it into the box provided.
    Watch a video demonstrating how to enter your CFE Exam Key

    Submitting the CFE Exam

    After you have completed all four sections of the CFE Exam, submit your completed CFE Exam:
    1. Select the Submit CFE Exam button on the Exam tab of the CFE Exam software.
    2. Please allow 3-5 business days for review of your CFE Exam.

    CFE Exam Affidavit

    A CFE Exam Affidavit, verifying the completion of your exam without assistance, is required for each submission of the CFE Exam. Upload your completed CFE Exam Affidavit to the Certification Portal upon completion of your exam submission.


    CFE Exam Results

    You will receive notification of your exam results, via email, within 3-5 business days of your exam submission. You must score at least 75 percent correct on each section of the CFE Exam in order to pass. CFE Exam scores are only released when you have not achieved the 75 percent pass rate. This procedure ensures the integrity of the testing process. The ACFE Board of Regents oversees the exam process.


    CFE Exam Retakes

    If you have studied using the CFE Exam Prep Course and do not pass, you may qualify for the Money-Back Pass Guarantee. If you qualify for the Money-Back Pass Guarantee you will receive a Retake Exam Activation Key with your results. If you do not qualify for the Money-Back Pass Guarantee or have studied without the CFE Exam Prep Course and do not pass, you may retake the CFE Exam for $25 per section. Within 3-5 business days of receiving the retake fee(s), your Retake Exam Activation Key will be sent to you by email.

    All four sections must be passed in three consecutive attempts. A CFE Exam affidavit is required for each submission of the CFE Exam.

    FAQs

    When and where can I take the CFE Exam?

    The CFE Exam is a computer based program, which you may take at any time. We do not use testing centers and do not have designated times when we administer the CFE Exam. To be eligible to take the CFE Exam, you will need to be a current member of the ACFE and have an approved CFE Exam Application on file.


    I requested my CFE Exam Access Key today, when will I receive it?

    If your CFE Exam application is approved, your request for the CFE Exam access key will be fulfilled within 3-5 business days.


    My exam application is not complete; can I request the CFE Exam?

    If you request the CFE Exam Activation Key before your CFE Exam application is approved, your CFE Exam Activation Key will not be sent to you. Your CFE Exam Activation Key will be sent to you by email within 3-5 business days of your CFE Exam application approval.


    How much time will I need to take the CFE Exam?

    It will take approximately 10 hours to complete the CFE Exam. Each section is allocated a maximum of 2.6 hours to complete. Each of the four exam sections has 125 questions and you will have a maximum of 75 seconds to answer each question.

    You have 30 days to complete all four sections of the CFE Exam and submit it to the ACFE for grading. You must complete each section in one sitting, but you do not have to complete all four sections at once.


    Why is the Submit Button not available? I have completed one section of the CFE Exam.

    You will need to complete all four sections of the CFE Exam before you can submit it for grading.


    I submitted my exam today, when will I get my exam results?

    You will receive your CFE Exam results within 3 to 5 business days. The results will be sent to you by email.


    I did not pass all four sections of the CFE exam on my first attempt; do I have to retake them all?

    No. On your second attempt of the CFE Exam you would only have to retake the sections you did not pass. You will have three attempts to pass all four sections of the CFE Exam.