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Canadian IT Manager : Sarbanes-Oxley Presentation to VANTUG

Canadian IT Manager : Sarbanes-Oxley Presentation to VANTUG

by Rick Turoczy on July 3, 2006

Much of the IT industry, especially in smaller companies, is only now coming to the realization of the impact of Sarbanes-Oxley or SOX. Denis Drouin of Ernst & Young gave a very interesting and informative talk to an enthusiastic group of VANTUG members on June 21. Denis works as a SOX IT Auditor and has been ‘very’ busy over the past couple of years! Judging by the audience reaction and questioning a good deal of what Denis presented was something of an ‘eye-opener’. For example, all publicly traded companies regardless of market cap must comply. The penalty for persistent non-compliance or refusal to comply can be a ‘cease trading’ order.

A number of people were under the mistaken impression that ‘smaller’ companies were exempt. The only concession to ‘smaller’ companies (defined as under $75 million market cap) is an extension to the compliance date until the end of this year. The object of SOX is to make company executives formally financially accountable to their shareholders. IT is affected in that the company’s financial and business systems are usually managed via IT systems. The auditors must be satisfied that the company financials are true and correct. Typically 2 different audits are involved; one is a straight financial audit to look for ‘creative’ accounting and an IT audit to demonstrate that the data that is used in the company financials has been processed correctly and is not open to any form of tampering from inside or outside of the company.

Canadian IT Manager: Sarbanes-Oxley Presentation to VANTUG

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