Due Diligence Hall of Shame – The other guy checked them out

Due diligence wall of shame

I’ve been collecting articles that illustrate some of the best reasons for conducting due diligence and some of the best examples of due diligence mistakes. It’s time to share these with you, starting with the missteps by Walgreens executives when vetting Theranos, prior to their soon-to-be doomed partnership . As reported by the Wall Street Journal, […]

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More Google Alternatives

Options - Google alternatives

According to the stats, by far the most popular post on this site is My Favorite Google Alternatives. It seems that we love Google, but we’re still looking for a better search engine. While it’s size and broad scope make Google great, there are times when we need something smaller and focused. In light of […]

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Update: My CFE Journey

My CFE journey

In a previous post, I let everyone know about my plans to pursue the Certified Fraud Examiner credential. After a little over a month, it’s time for an update. To prepare for the exam, I’m using the online CFE Exam Prep Course from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. This course is amazing, and I […]

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The Top 3 Fraud Trends to Prepare for in 2016

2016 Fraud Trends

As mentioned in a previous post, I’m working towards my Certified Fraud Examiner credential. In doing so, I’ve immersed myself in all things related to fraud, including podcasts from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. In the latest podcast, John Gill, ACFE VP of Education, talks about the three top fraud trends that he predicts […]

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My Next Big Challenge – Certified Fraud Examiner

Fraud word cloud

It’s been longer than usual between posts, and, unfortunately, it might not get much better for a the next few months. While I don’t usually get too personal here, I’ll fill you in on what’s been going on and what’s on the horizon. Just before Christmas I injured some ribs in one of those crazy […]

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Resources for National Mentoring Month

Mentoring resources

It’s National Mentoring Month, and – as someone who has benefited from my experiences as both a mentor and mentee – I’d like to share some resources I’ve recently found on the topic: From Pursuit Magazine, Flying Lessons: What Pilots Know about Mentorship is geared toward private investigators, but the lessons apply to everyone. 3 […]

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Google Images for Due Diligence Investigations

Use Google Image search in due diligence background investigations

Google Images plays a big part in Phelps Research’s due diligence investigations. A photo of a subject can help confirm an identity and add a face to a name in a report. But sometimes Google’s image search results can lead to much more. On several occasions I’ve found some great non-image content that’s had a […]

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Things This Private Investigator Doesn’t Do – Unauthorized Degree Verifications

Things this PI doesn't do

Since becoming a private investigator, I’ve received numerous requests from potential clients that I eventually file under “Things This PI Doesn’t Do.” The first item on the list  – surveillance – is based on personal preference. I prefer not to hang out in my car for long stretches of time. Other items are more about […]

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Giving Thanks For Those Who Share


Well, I’ve survived another family Thanksgiving here at Casa de Phelps. Many years ago, when I married into the family, I had no idea what a fun ride it would be. This crew really knows how to throw a party. Thirteen people and six dogs crowded into our home this year to celebrate, enjoy each […]

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