THE PRESSURE OF PANDEMICS: During an outbreak, internal audit should focus on stronger controls, says Business Continuity Management Institute President Moh Heng Goh.

How can internal audit functions support business continuity during pandemics? Once a pandemic like the coronavirus (COVID-19) has occurred, there is little an auditor can be involved in as major audit activities should be reduced due to the possibility of transferring infection between auditor and client. Additionally, the client's focus may be on the response and recovery of its critical business functions.

While the outbreak is occurring, the audit team can focus on possible breakdowns in controls of processes as business functions operate from a remote or alternate location, or even from home. The key is to strengthen the controls to minimize the potential for errors resulting from manual interventions and the possibility of fraud. It is important to note that the observance of...

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