Forensic investigation is a challenging field where information plays a key role, from cyber threat investigations to extracting evidence from large, complex data sets. Pranali Shetty, a Master of Information Management (MIM) ’15 graduate, attributes her discovery of the field and flourishing career to the University of Maryland College of Information Studies (iSchool) MIM program.
Pranali enrolled in the MIM program with an enthusiasm for the robust curriculum in data science, finance, and statistics. During her time in the program, she discovered her interest in the client-focused domain of forensic investigation. She was also drawn to the field’s need for forward-thinking data analytics, cutting-edge technologies, and problem-solving skills – all of which she was learning in the MIM program.
Now, as a manager at Forensic Risk Alliance (FRA), Pranali works on various projects to help businesses manage risks and investigate instances of fraud, corruption, noncompliance, and more. By dissecting large data sets, Pranali has led investigations in multiple jurisdictions and countries to help businesses secure their processes and data.
Pranali shared that in addition to gaining technical skills and a deep understanding of data risk and governance through the MIM program, she also learned valuable communication skills. “To survive in the forensic investigative field, you need the best of both worlds - highly technical skills and confidence to communicate in social settings, interact with clients, and convey findings,” says Pranali. She appreciates that she was able to hone her communication techniques through the MIM program’s many networking opportunities and courses designed to be interactive with clients.
For those looking to pursue a career in forensic investigations, Pranali advises diligence in staying up to date with analytical and technical skills in the industry. Since graduating, Pranali obtained a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) certification and is now working on her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) certification. When not focused on her continued education, Pranali enjoys Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Powerlifting, and Snowboarding in her free time.