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Control Chatter                                                   September 2018
News that Control Professionals Need to Know

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 *All New* Internal Control online courses
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The ICI "Certification Series" has been completely updated and is available online to everyone around the world!  Course content prepares individuals to design and/or assess internal control and to assist management in installing internal control processes. In addition, the series prepares candidates for the Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS) Examination.
To review the course catalog click here: ICI Course Catalog
To register for one or all of the online training programs click here:  

Online course pricing has been reduced by over 70%, so get started today! 
****Limited Time Only****
Test your Knowledge of Internal Control
*** Take the  Internal Control Knowledge Mini-Assessment ***
The Internal Control Institute has developed a CICS Common Body of Knowledge Mini-Assessment that helps an individual determine their knowledge as it relates to governance and control practices. Results point out areas of knowledge that may require additional training and experience. The assessment also provides a measurement to the individual's readiness for CICS certification. The assessment measures core knowledge in eight critical areas including: Internal Control - Principles, Terms and Concepts, Internal Control Environment, Risk Management, Assessing Application Controls, Business System Control Assessment, Risk Assessment, Internal Control Measurement and Reporting, and Governance Practices
In This Issue
All New Internal Control online courses
Professional Expertise Improvement Importance
ICI Announcements
Control Objectives & Activities: What Are They & What's Appropriate
Which Acquisitions Will Generate Negative Stock Returns?
Investors trust auditors, but confidence in U.S. markets drops
Credit Suisse to Improve Anti-Money Laundering Processes
Danske Bank CEO quits over $234 billion money laundering scandal.
Group Blasts SEC's Proposed Whistleblower Changes
RISK MATURITY: How to document risk appetite
New Corporate Governance Code
MMI learns the tough realities of Africa
Sindh govt bungled almost 30% of its budget in 2016-17
Professional Expertise Improvement Importance
By Michael Pregmon, Jr., Ph.D., CICP
COO and Managing Director
Dr. Michael Pregmon, Jr.
COO and Managing Director 
Regardless of the profession we are involved in, keeping up to date is a major challenge. Research and information in all specialties is "moving" at breakneck speeds. This has certainly had an impact, particularly in certain professions, and, it has changed professions to a point where we find specialists are in need everywhere. In fact, the fast pace of research and information availability has seemingly dictated the need for more specialty professions. Nowhere is this more evident than in the medical profession. Here, there is such a shortage of general physicians that the specialty of nurse practitioner has developed and grown significantly. These professionals are filling in under tutelage of a physician because of the shortage.
It is imperative to keep updated in your specialty. In fact, with almost all credible certifications there is a recurring requirement to re-certify. The crux of these re-certification requirements typically encourages the professional to undertake a form of continuous education to maintain proficiency in his/her specialty. Aside from certification program requirements, demands for individual performance require a posture of continuous education. The trite saying "if you are not moving forward, you are certainly moving backward" is truly applicable here.
Over the past 50 years, I have had the opportunity to recruit many professionals. To me this truly has always been a privilege. In each of these occasions, I use the following three points to qualify the candidates:

Does the candidate possess the Technical/Professional expertise?


Naturally, one of the first requirements is to determine whether the candidate possess the skills and educational requirements for the job. These may not necessarily involve specific academic requirements. But typically, a type of professional expertise is required for most positions. For instance, if the job involves a warehouse position, does the candidate have forklift operator experience? If the job involves software testing, with what systems has the candidate had prior experience?

Does the candidate exhibit the quality of "Thinking outside the box?"


This is an unusual trait that many employees do not have. But this attribute often differentiates the "true" performer. All jobs have certain performance standards. Nevertheless, the superior performer is typically able to differentiate the unusual from the mundane.

Has the candidate developed a record of self- improvement?


This usually is the item that separates the candidates for the job. And of the three, this one is the easiest to quantify. Keeping abreast of advances in your profession is a must in today's competitive environment. This trait is also an indicator of the professional's desire to deliver value to his/her organization.
As a professional. Are you keeping up with the challenge?
The Internal Control Institute™ (ICI) improves organizational Internal Control worldwide by providing training, products and services and individual Professional Certifications recognized internationally. The Institute's Board of Advisors has determined it would like to further expand into areas where it is not directly represented. ICI provides world-class programs and its intellectual property to affiliates free of charge and shares all program revenue with them. If your organization is interested in partnering with ICI to earn revenue while you contribute to the development of the internal control profession worldwide please contact Dr. Michael Pregmon, Jr., Chief Operations Officer, by email at: or by phone at 727-538-4113   in the USA. 

ICI Affiliate News:

The Internal Control Institute is conducting certification training in a classroom format for the internationally recognized CICS (Certified Internal Control Specialist) certification in internal control. Information on these programs regarding dates and schedules can be found on the Events tab on our Website or directed to the affiliate named below.


Training Plans :

Rio de Janeiro - October 1-5, 2018
Curitiba - November 19-23, 2018
Brasília - November 26-30, 2018

For more details on planned training please check on the website below, or send a message to Mr. Eduardo Person Pardini


CICS Training Class Beijing September 2018

Training Plans :

Hangzhou - October 18-21, 2018
Beijing - November 22-25, 2018 
Shanghai - November 29 - December 2, 2018 

Individuals or companies interested in internal control training and Certification should contact:
Mr. Qiu Jianting
Room 1039, Block A, Jinmao Building, No. 18, Xizhimenwai Street,
Xicheng District, Beijing, China
Zip Code: 100044
Mobile phone: 13810588109


Training Plans :

Brussels - September 28, 2018 (in Dutch)
Luxembourg - October 24, 2018 (in French)
Brussels - January 22, 2019 (in French)

For more information on scheduled training and exams please contact Mr.Yves Dupont of ICI Belgium at: 
For more information on upcoming activities in this area please contact Mr. Summit Goyal of  ICI India at :
Phone: +91 9810575613

Myanmar and Cambodia:
ICI is proud to announce it has entered into an agreement with Better Business Governance - APAC PTE LTD (BBG) as its representative for Products, Services and Internal Control Certifications (CICS/CICP) in Myanmar and Cambodia. 
Better Business Governance will be responsible for all development activities, including professional training and Certification.  For more information on upcoming activities in this area please contact:
Better Business Governance
Mr. Sanjeev Gathani
1 Claymore Drive
#08-14, Orchard Towers (Rear Block)
Singapore 229594
For more information on upcoming activities in this area please contact the following:
Antonio Salas Hernandez CICP,  Email: 
Joaquin Prendes Herrera, Email: 

Middle East:

The CICS exam is now being  provided in Arabic.  Osool Training and Consulting has courses and testing available in Jordan, Libya, Muscat, Sudan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Palestine. 

Training Plan 2018
Certification Preparation Programs are scheduled as follows:

Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS) Amman-Jordan October 7-16
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS) Amman-Jordan October 22-30
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS) Tunis-Tunisia    October 6-11
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS)  Riyadh-Saudi Arabia  November  18-22
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS)  Dubai-UAE  November  18-22
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS)  Kuwait-Kuwait  November  25-29
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS)  Doha-Qatar December 2-6
Certified Internal Control Specialist (CICS)  Dubai-UAE    December  23-27

Interested applicants in that region should contact Osool for scheduling for future programs.  For additional information on scheduled ICI Certification and program sessions, please contact:

Lina Salameh
Assistant General Manager
O SOOL for Training & Consulting
Mob Oman:  +968 95 98 98 20
Mob Jordan: +962 7 99589666
Tel:   +962 6 5927171 Ext. 107
Fax:  +962 6 5927172

Leadway Consulting conducts CICS training sessions and examinations in Nigeria. For more information on upcoming activities in Nigeria  please contact:
Mr.  Joel Aluko


For more information on activities in Pakistan individuals or companies should contact : Muhammad Farooq Hammodi

Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan:
ICI has entered into an agreement with GRC Consultancy Pte Ltd. (ICI Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan) as its representative for Products, Services and Internal Control Certifications (CICS/CICP) in those territories.  

Individuals or companies interested in internal control training or Certification should contact:
General enquiries for all 4 markets -
Singapore - Mr. Bob Seetoh -
MalaysiaMr. Melvin
IndonesiaMr. Barry Dingga -
Taiwan - Ms. Mickey Tai -


CICS Training course:  Istanbul - September 22-23, 2018
CICS Certification Exam: Istanbul/Ankara - 20 October 2018

For information on scheduled ICI Certification and program sessions, please contact ICI Turkey  below:

Ms. Ilknur Tunc,  VP -
Dr. Bertan Kaya -
GOP Mahallesi, İran Caddesi, Karum İs Merkezi
No:21, D Blok, 4. Kat, D:398-399

+90 (312) 4425015 T
+90 (533) 4474444 D
CICS Training course: 15, 16, 22, 23 September 2018

CICS examinations to be held in Vietnam: 

20 September 2018
20 December  2018
04 April 2019

For more information on upcoming activities in Vietnam please contact: NGUYEN THANH TUNG (MBA. M.Eng, PhD.) Director, FMIT Institute of Financial Management & Information Technology,  Level 5 , 126 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai Street, Ward 6, District 3, HCMC, Viet Nam
Office: 848 3803 5020 - 848 3512 9371 - 848 3512 7652

For more information on activities being planned please contact:
Mr. Proctor Nyemba at:
2018 Internal Controls Training Calendar:  View the Training Calendar
Internal Control Chatter  
Each month the staff of The Internal Control Institute reviews hundreds of articles related to Internal Control and Corporate Governance. Here are brief summaries of some of the top articles (along with links to the original article) that may be of interest to you.
Control Objectives & Activities: What Are They & What's Appropriate
Have you ever invited a consultancy firm to perform a SOC 1 (f. SSAE 16) audit for your firm?  They should have begun by asking you the control objectives that you want in the scope of their examination. Most entrepreneurs will start by asking the experts what they mean by control objectives. I also came across this question when I wanted someone to write my paper This article will help you to understand the meaning of control objectives and how to draft and identify them in your next SOC 1 report. The situation is similar to anyone who wants to buy college papers online  because you have to follow specific guidelines to get the required results.
Which Acquisitions Will Generate Negative Stock Returns?
If the acquiring company elects to exempt the target from Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404 internal controls attestation, negative stock returns may follow.
It's no secret that a substantial percentage of acquisitions fail to deliver expected synergies.  That risk increases if the companies are comparable in size or if the acquired business is material to the acquiring company. For example, the 2001 merger of Hewlett-Packard and Compaq Computer arguably led to the end of industry dominance for both companies. That doesn't mean we can predict whether a particular acquisition will fail. But what if we could?  A recent academic paper,  "Costs and Benefits of Internal Control Audits: Evidence from M&A transactions" (accepted for publication in Review of Accounting Studies), provides some insight into acquisitions that may generate negative returns to investors.  The authors, Kravet et al., found evidence that excluding acquired companies from the assessment of  internal controls  - as permitted by Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Section 404 in the first year after an acquisition  - generated statistically significant negative stock returns of 0.8% at the time of the exemption announcement. (Typically, such announcements come months after the acquisition news hits the market.)
Investors trust auditors, but confidence in U.S. markets drops
By Ken Tysiac
September 18, 2018
Public company auditors remain the group investors trust most to protect their interests, but investors' confidence in U.S. capital markets and U.S. public companies has dropped in the past year, according to a Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) survey report released Tuesday.Respondents to the Main Street Investor survey kept independent auditors of publicly traded companies in the top spot among entities they trust most to look out for investors. More than four in five (81%) respondents said they have some, quite a bit, or a great deal of trust in public company auditors. That's a dip of three percentage points from 2017, and it narrowly edges out independent audit committees of public companies (80%) for the top spot among the most-trusted entities.
Credit Suisse to Improve Anti-Money Laundering Processes
By Zacks Equity Research
September 18, 2018
The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority ("FINMA") has detected shortcomings in Credit Suisse Group AG's  CS  anti-money laundering compliance processes after investigating the bank in relation to certain cases in the period between 2006 and 2014.  The cases, defined as legacy cases by the bank, were in relation to suspected corruption activities involving the International Federation of Association Football FIFA, the Brazilian oil corporation Petrobras and the Venezuelan oil corporation Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. Also, the bank was investigated in relation to a significant business relationship with a politically exposed person. In both the circumstances, FINMA concluded that Credit Suisse failed to implement proper anti-money laundering process. Remedial Measures to be Undertaken.  The Swiss bank has been ordered to improve its internal control processes and accelerate the implementation of steps that had been initiated by it in 2015.
Danske Bank CEO quits over $234 billion money laundering scandal
By Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen, Teis Jensen
SEPTEMBER 19, 2018
Danske Bank's ( DANSKE.CO ) chief executive Thomas Borgen resigned on Wednesday after an investigation revealed payments totaling 200 billion euros ($234 billion) through its small Estonian branch, many of which the bank said were suspicious. The Danish bank detailed compliance and control failings amid growing calls for a European Union crackdown on financial crime after a series of money laundering scandals which have attracted the attention of U.S. authorities. "Even though I was personally cleared from a legal point of view, I hold the ultimate responsibility. There is no doubt that we as an organization have failed in this situation and did not live up to expectations," Borgen, who will stay on until a new CEO is appointed, told a press conference.
Group Blasts SEC's Proposed Whistleblower Changes
The National Whistleblower Center says the changes are "radically anti-whistleblower" and mirror U.S. Chamber of Commerce's views.
September 17, 2018
A major whistleblower advocacy group urged the Securities and Exchange Commission Monday to extend public comment period on the agency's planned changes to its whistleblower program so that it can glean more information on what the group says are "radically anti-whistleblower" positions in the SEC's plan that mirror U.S. Chamber of Commerce views. The comment period ends Tuesday.  The National Whistleblower Center argued Monday in a  letter  to SEC Chairman Jay Clayton that the agency has yet to release all the materials it sought in a recent Freedom of Information Act request.  The center had asked for, among other items, communications between the SEC and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in a FOIA request filed July 18, shortly before the SEC proposed the changes  on July 20 However, the SEC has failed to produce 15,877 emails and other documents it identified as responsive to the request, the center said, arguing for more transparency.
RISK MATURITY: How to document risk appetite
September 12, 2018
Most mature organizations have already documented their appetites for different risks to objectives.  Segregation of duties, financing and deal limits, procurement criteria, investment criteria, zero tolerance to fraud or safety risks - are all examples of how organizations set risk appetites. Sometimes risk appetite is driven by legal or regulatory requirements, industry practices, sometimes by stakeholder expectations. When assessing risk management maturity, reviewers should check existing Board level (or equivalent) policies and procedures to identify: significant decisions/activities that already have their risk appetite set. For example, a company may have a Board level policy that prohibits any business ventures with organizations that utilize child labor. Or it may have a requirement not to invest in high-risk ventures above a certain ratio. In cases, where the risk appetite has already been set, reviewers should check with internal auditors to test whether limits are realistic and are in fact adhered to. for the decisions/activities where no risk appetite has been set by any of the existing policies or procedures, reviewers should discuss with the process owners to understand risk appetite and see whether it has been incorporated into other existing policies and procedures.
New Corporate Governance Code
BY Ken Williamson
EY's analysis of 100 annual reports from FTSE 350 companies shows improvements have been made around reporting on stakeholder engagement, purpose and culture, with companies making adjustments in advance of the new Code coming into effect. Although EY says there is still some way to go to ensure that the disclosures are fully compliant and provide meaningful insights on these new areas. Stakeholder engagement features more prominently  According to EY's research, 83 percent of the annual reports disclose how companies are engaging with their employees and 65 percent describe the methods they are using to engage with other stakeholders such as suppliers.
MMI learns the tough realities of Africa
The company is exiting its operations in Mauritius, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia and Swaziland
20 SEPTEMBER 2018 
A number of SA companies are learning the hard way that the so-called untapped African markets aren't always ripe for exploitation.  Earlier this month, as the woes of Standard Bank and MTN in Nigeria deepened, SA's third-biggest insurer, MMI, said it would complete its exit in seven African countries over the next 12 months. The reality in markets that include Zambia, Mozambique and Tanzania turned out to be worlds apart from what MMI had envisaged. "Earnings have been volatile, we've had internal control problems and the leadership needs to be strengthened," CEO Hillie Meyer said when the company presented its financial results earlier this month.
Sindh govt bungled almost 30% of its budget in 2016-17
The Auditor-General of Pakistan (AGP) has found financial irregularities, misappropriation, embezzlement, fraud, and theft in public funds to the tune of Rs.292.85 billion in 34 departments of the government of Sindh. The official report reveals that of the 292.85b worth of irregularities and losses, an amount of 71.5b was lost due to the violation of rules and regulations, 921.9 million due to fraud, theft, and misuse of public resources, 822 million in accounting errors, 7.75b due to the weakness of internal control systems. Another 19.12b was lost due to irregularities in recoveries and overpayments while various departments failed to produce records pertaining to a collectively calculated expenditure of 114b. The report notes that the total outlay of the provincial government's budget for fiscal year, 2016-17 was Rs1049.4 billion, of which the non-development budget was Rs765.6 billion and development budget was Rs283.77b. At the end of the year, the actual accounted expenditure stood at Rs863.4b, while the remaining was unaccounted for, according to the AG's report.
Control Quotes
" You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win."
Zig Ziglar
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ici logo The Internal Control Institute™ (ICI) is a worldwide organization  devoted exclusively to internal control and corporate governance. The Institute is dedicated to the development of world-class educational programs and best practice guidelines on internal control and corporate governance, based on the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the COSO internal control framework.  Visit us on the web at the Internal Control Institute
Control Chatter is a monthly news summary of the top stories concerning internal control and corporate governance.  Control Chatter is prepared by the staff of Internal Control Institute for the benefit of their members and associates. Please consider it for your personal use or pass it on to associates who may have an interest in one or more of the topics by clicking on the Forward email button below.