ACCA new accountant: Philip Beckett

The 27-year-old, who lives in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, achieved the highest mark in the world in ACCA’s December 2001 final examinations, winning the institute’s gold medal. He managed to beat 15,000 other students from around the world who sat each of the final three papers.

Phillip came top in the financial strategic management paper, achieving the highest mark in the paper for both the December 2001 and June 2002 sittings.He achieved this outstanding performance despite many sleepless nights during the study period for his final exams following the arrival of Joshua, he and his wife Trisha’s first baby.

Phillip joined BDO from Andersen in May last year. He had been working in Andersen’s IT audit department, where he started on forensic computing work, grabbing information off individual PCs.

But he never got to see the fruits of his labour, unaware of what happened to the information once it was collated, and as a consequence began the ACCA qualification, which, because of its broad syllabus, proved to be appropriate for his work.

Beckett works primarily in the investigation and prevention of corporate fraud, having decided to specialise early.

He is now responsible for the development of BDO Stoy Hayward’s computer forensic capabilities where he has been leading the way in the use of new technology in the commercial sector, being regarded as one of the top practitioners in this field.

He is keen to progress his career with the firm but is looking forward to a break from exams. That said, he is already planning to study for an MBA or masters degree in fraud prevention.

When he’s not fighting fraud, Phillip finds time for badminton and squash but most of his time is spent ‘enjoying myself with my little boy’. Phillip is no stranger to winning awards – he was also recently awarded top marks on completion of the first commercial forensic computing course run by Cranfield University, a course primarily designed for law enforcement agents.

Phillip follows in the footsteps of Leigh Jostins, last year’s winner, who was the finance director of Marks Barfield, the award-winning architect of the London Eye.

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