Baseline Testing: Benchmarking of Automated Controls

Baseline testing is a term used in accounting and audit to describe the testing of an automated application control. Once an automated application control has been tested and it is determined by an auditor to be effective, the auditor may conclude that the control remains effective over subsequent periods as long as the automated application […]

New Norms For Reporting Fraud To The SEC

Prior to 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had permitted companies in fraud cases to settle without admitting to any wrongdoing; this meant that even in serious cases of accounting fraud, companies could simply walk away without admitting their malfeasance despite the loss of millions on the part of investors. However, in 2013, the […]

Breach Management: Best Practices and Policies

Cybercrime puts any business at risk—more so now than ever before, as the recent Target and Sony attacks emphasize. Cybercriminals are constantly working to find devious ways to destroy brands, disrupt operations, and steal information. Breach management policies are the key to addressing these growing cyber crime risks. The two concepts that business leaders must […]

Guidelines for Auditing Ethics and Compliance Programs

Auditing ethics and compliance programs ensures that an organization “walks the walk.” This is the way any business can safeguard itself against fraud by seeing that the practices that exist in its daily operations match up with the procedures it espouses in its policies and code of conduct. Neglecting internal audit’s role is risky. In […]

Protecting Customer Data: Five Things You Can Change Now

There have been several recent examples of the damage that poor data protection can cause even very powerful companies: just ask Sony, Home Depot, or Target. Trouble protecting consumer data can cost a company more than bad publicity. Lawsuits, fines, and permanent loss of business are all likely consequences of poor data protection. According to a 2013 […]

Risks and Rewards of a Bring Your Own Device Policy

Today most people can’t imagine getting through the day without their mobile devices, and many employees expect to be able to use their personal electronics at work. In fact, even if your employees really aren’t supposed to use their own devices for work purposes, chances are good that they do so nonetheless. The officially recognized […]

The Risks of Conducting Business Internationally

Conducting business internationally carries many risks that domestic business does not. International business involves exposure to local economic conditions, fraud, and bribery. Business can be interrupted by political problems such as insurrections, problematic diplomatic relations, hostility from locals, and volatile foreign governments. Unstable currency exchange rates and exchange restrictions can also complicate international dealings. Finally, […]

Handling Misconduct at the Management Level the Right Way

Recently, the SEC awarded a whistleblower with more than $300,000. Though the employee first reported misconduct internally, the company failed to act and suffered greater consequences for inaction. This was the first such award given to a whistleblower working in compliance, and acts as a signal to the business community: respond appropriately to reports of […]

Creating a Speak Up Culture

Research and case studies have proven that a majority of employees do not speak up when they see fraud or misconduct in the workplace. This is true across a spectrum of businesses, even when employees have great IT security, sound internal audit procedures, and other corporate resources to report misconduct. Modern businesses face a major […]

Fraud Prevention for Venture Capital and Private Equity

It happens all the time, human capital / resource constraints at start-ups and small to medium sized companies limit the ability to have a robust accounting and finance staff. In most cases one person is typically responsible for many tasks. When these tasks overlap, like: reviewing and paying invoices; setting up and approving new clients; […]