Alternative Uses for Data Analytics Tools

Report
Who left the CAATs out – Alternative
Uses of Data Analytics Tools
Tim Smith, CPA CISA, CISSP
March 28, 2013
The Corporate Caveats
 The concepts presented are my own and do not
represent LPL Financial or LPL Financial Internal
Audit.
2
What we are going to cover
 CAATs revisited
 How can they be used in new ways
 Why auditors need to learn to use them
 What tools exist
 CAATs Close-up
 Looking at security with CAATs
 Some IDEA functions for new tricks
 Some IDEA / CAATs success stories
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A few things to use CAATs for
 Validating data entry dates / times / users to identify
postings or data entry times that are inappropriate or
suspicious.
 Classification to find patterns and associations among
groups of data elements.
 Gap testing to identify missing numbers in sequential
data.
 Joining different data sources to identify
inappropriately matching values such as names,
addresses, and account numbers in disparate systems.
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Before you ask IT – ask yourself
 What are you trying to test?
 Controls
Metadata
 Reports
 Data
 Transaction Details
 Reports
 Data
 Reports
 Off-the-shelf
 Custom / ad-hoc

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Metadata in an accounting system
 Non-financial fields discussing the
 Who
 What
 When
 How
About the fields in the records comprising financial
information
Together, these data can provide a diagnostic view
of the accounting system
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What might we need to look at
 Retroactively
 Transaction data – especially between systems
 Transaction metadata
 Module or journal entries
 Logs
 Prospectively
 System access
 Program change management
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Working with system access
information
 Larger software vendors are targeting the small to medium
enterprise space – SAP, Oracle, Microsoft. As a result, many
businesses have access listings containing thousands of
lines
 System access information can be complex – very granular,
with difficult formats
 Data may cover multiple menu layers and multiple
modules within an application
 Therefore, it is vital to gain a understanding of basic access
information structure and what you want to test before
starting
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A few systems with complex
security reports
 Oracle Financials
 SAP (SmartExporter)
 Microsoft Dynamics – Great Plains
 Sage MAS 500
 ADP Enterprise HR (EV5)-- Formerly PeopleSoft
HRMS
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MS Great Plains v10 security model –
four levels
 Security Operations refers to access to all windows,
tables, reports and miscellaneous permissions
 A Security Task is a set of Security Operations
required to perform a specific task
 A Security Role combines multiple Security Tasks
required to perform a specific role
 Each User and Company combination can have
multiple Security Roles assigned to it
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Complex Access From a higher
level – viewed From the role
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Unexpected functions within the
roles
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What are the tools?
 Excel – row limitation (was 65K lines, now 1m or so);
data easily changeable
 Access – data also easily changed; might also hit a size
limitation (1GB for pre 2003; 2-3 GB now)
 SQL Server – again, data changeability; probable need
for programming knowledge (SQL)
 Specific CAATs software packages
 ACL – Audit Command Language
 IDEA – Interactive Data Extraction and Analysis
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Key functionalities of IDEA
 Profiling the data
 Extractions
 Gaps and Duplicates
 Adding a new field
 Smart Analyzer (an Add-on module)
 Joining Databases
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CAATs success stories 1
GAO report 02-406
 Significant internal control weaknesses in
Education’s payment processes and poor
physical control over its computer assets
made the department vulnerable to and in
some cases resulted in fraud, improper
payments, and lost assets.
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CAATs success stories 2
 Assisted a Federal agency evaluate
problems with its accounting system,
taking it from a disclaimer in year 1 to a
qualified balance sheet in year 2 to a
clean opinion in year 3.
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MS GreatPlains
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IIA 10/10/2012
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RACF security – User Attributes
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iSeries – Display Object
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Report Reader
 Can be used with formatted text files
 Can be used with non-picture PDF files
 Create a template that can be used for future
files of similar construction
 Crucial for work with non-columnar reports
or reports with header / trailer information
to be ignored
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Smart Analyzer – built in tests
 Tests Looking at the Metadata
 Journal Entries Posted on Weekends
 Journal Entries Posted on Specific Dates and Times
 Journal Entries by User
 Journal Entries with Specific Comments
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Joining databases - concepts
Primary
1001 Lagos
1002 Cairo
1003 New York
1004 Paris
1005 Berlin
1006 Sydney
1007 Toronto
1008 Durban
1009 London
All records from
secondary is not
included -> select
secondary file as
primary file
Secondary
1004 France
1004 China
1006 Australia
1007 Canada
1008 South Africa
1009 UK
1010 Brazil
1011 Austria
1012 Peru
No matches in Secondary
Note that ‘1005 Berlin’ also will
be included and no empty
columns from secondary
database will be included
All records from Primary
note that ‘1004 China’ will
not be included
Matches Only
note that ‘1005 Berlin’ and
‘1004 China’ will be excluded
No matches in Primary
Note that ‘1004 China’ will
NOT be included and
empty record from primary will
be add to these 2 columns
All records in both files
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Joining databases - results
All records from both files
All records from Primary
1001
Lagos
0
1001
Lagos
0
1002
Cairo
0
1002
Cairo
0
1003
New York
0
1003
New York
0
1004
Paris
0
1004
France
1004
Paris
1004
1004
China
1005
Berlin
0
1006
Sydney
1006
1007
Toronto
1008
1009
1005
Berlin
0
1006
Sydney
1006
Australia
1007
Toronto
1007
Canada
1008
Durban
1008
South
Africa
1009
London
1009
UK
0
1010
Brazil
0
1011
Austria
0
1012
Peru
Matches Only
France
1004
Paris
1004
France
Australia
1006
Sydney
1006
Australia
1007
Canada
1007
Toronto
1007
Canada
Durban
1008
South
Africa
1008
Durban
1008
South
Africa
London
1009
UK
1009
London
1009
UK
No Primary
No Secondary
0
1010
Brazil
0
1011
0
1012
1001
Lagos
Austria
1002
Cairo
Peru
1003
New York
1005
Berlin
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CAATs Success Stories 3
 Determined the extent of data changed by an A/R
manager modified data to awards for efficient A/R
management
 Discovered numerous instances of cash awards where
the same person proposed, approved, and received.
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MAYHEM…..and CAATs
 The authors describe manipulating a major financial
accounting systems used by corporations large and
small (Great Plains) to show the importance of good
information security and accounting controls.
 They identify information security and accounting
controls needed to detect these types of attacks.
 http://www.securestate.com/Research%20and%20Inn
ovation/Pages/Tools.aspx
 In this time of reduced resources….don’t leave the
CAATs out.
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Questions or Comments?
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Contact Information
Tim Smith
Tim.cpa4IT.@yahoo.com
619-929-1221
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