Internal Auditor Highlights Benefit of Continuous Monitoring
Alison Gordon from Washoe County, Nevada is like many other internal auditors: she is an “internal auditor of one”. That is, she’s the only person in her organization tasked with the responsibility of addressing high-risk issues such as disbursement controls, segregation of duties, continuity of existing business procedures and fraud prevention.
To perform her duties effectively, Alison has turned to the CaseWare Monitor continuous monitoring solution to identify high-risk transactions. For example, on the vendor side, the software allows her to identify address changes, bank detail changes or if the vendor is only showing a post office box (which could be indicative of fraud).
When analyzing transactions, Alison set up the software to allow her to check for requisition approvals, compliance with transaction thresholds, approvals for transactions above a certain dollar amount, and payment and invoice comparison.
The biggest benefit for Alison and Washoe County is that by continuously monitoring their data they can focus on proactive loss prevention rather than reactive loss recovery. This reduces the amount of effort and time required to recover lost funds once it is detected.
“KPMG did a survey several years ago and found that it takes about 342 days to detect fraud,” says Alison. “That is almost a year, at which point only about 10% is recoverable!”
Other benefits of continuous monitoring is that problems are identified in near real-time, and the software can look across multiple data sets like revenues, expenditures, payroll and grants from different applications—all at the same time. In a way it is like a “super-auditor” that can look at 100% of the data, rather than just a subset of it.
Continuous monitoring software also helps reduce the time required to analyze data from days to minutes, which again emphasizes the benefit that exceptions can be investigated right away for loss prevention rather than loss recovery.
Hear from Alison herself about why she chose to continuously monitor Washoe County’s transactions.
About Andrew Simpson:
Andrew Simpson has close to two decades of experience in the information systems audit and security business; specifically data analytics, interrogation and forensics. He is a regular contributor to various auditing conferences and is acknowledged as an expert on continuous controls monitoring and revenue assurance.
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