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COSO Framework Overhaul Sparking Deeper Debates

Tammy Whitehouse | April 24, 2012

COSO's effort to update its famed, but 20-year-old, framework for managing internal controls has sparked a deeper debate this spring about how companies should approach internal control overall, and whether significant changes are in order. What the final answers might be remains anyone's guess.

COSO published a draft of the update to its 1992 Internal Control – Integrated Framework at the end of last year. It asked companies and others to comment how the revised version might work in practice. Since then, several opinions have emerged either supporting the update's incremental approach to change, or voicing strong criticism that the update doesn't go far enough to reflect current thinking on internal controls.

“There are some very substantive suggestions on how it can be made clearer and more relevant,” says Stephen Soske, a PwC partner who is heavily involved in the update. COSO has received nearly 100 formal comment letters and an equal number of...

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