Best-Selling Author of Billion-Dollar Whale Says It Is “Unlikely” That Singapore and Hong Kong Will Take Meaningful Action Against Fraud



Austin, Texas, U.S. (September 20, 2019) — Although the 1MDB scandal first came to light in 2015, the effects are still being felt in the Asia-Pacific region today. “It’s become clear that banks and other financial firms in Singapore and Hong Kong are facilitators of fraud,” said best-selling author Tom Wright. “Singapore took action to jail some bankers, but Hong Kong has yet to act. Both places will have to take further action to ensure bad actors don’t continue to operate on their soil, but this is unlikely.”

Wright, the former Asia Economics Editor for the Wall Street Journal, will address hundreds of anti-fraud professionals in Singapore at the 2019 ACFE Fraud Conference Asia-Pacific. He believes that accounting practices in the region contribute to fraud. “One of the major problems in Asia is the poor quality of auditing. Often local affiliates of the Big Four are barely supervised by head office, and local standards of auditing are lax to say the least,” he said. “Fraud is pervasive in this region, and any deal needs to be viewed with skepticism, even if it has the backing of governments.”

Attendees will gather at Marina Bay Sands on 25-27 September to hear from Wright, as well as other thought leaders like Eric Lam, the director for the Asia-Pacific and Japan for Microsoft’s cybersecurity solutions group, Yuen Teen Mak, an associate professor of accounting at the National University of Singapore, and others.

Concurrent sessions will include discussions about emerging data analytics and tools, conflicts of interest, blockchain technology, anti-bribery compliance and more. This conference is an invaluable opportunity to hear from today’s anti-fraud leaders and for journalists in the region to meet and cultivate expert sources for future stories.

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About the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners
Based in Austin, Texas, the ACFE is the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education. Together with more than 85,000 members, the ACFE is reducing business fraud worldwide and inspiring public confidence in the integrity and objectivity within the profession. For more information, visit

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