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Dr. Hart Will

加拿大維多利亞大學 Professor Emeritus

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黃秀鳳 總經理

中華民國內部稽核協會常務理事/專業發展委員會主任委員、傑克商業自動化股份有限公司/總經理、國際電腦稽核教育協會大中華分會/ ICAEA大中華分會會長、臺北商業大學及致理科技大學/金融審計兼任講師

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黃素慧 助理教授

朝陽科技大學會計系助理教授

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蘇永盛 副教授

國立高雄第一科技大學會計資訊系副教授兼系主任

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吳善全 助理教授

慈濟技術學院會計資訊系助理教授

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蕭幸金 教授

國立臺北商業大學會計資訊系教授暨財經學院院長

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黃劭彥 教授

國立中正大學會計與資訊科技學系教授

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孫嘉明 副教授

國立雲林科技大學會計系副教授

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黃士銘 教授

國立中正大學會計與資訊科技學系教授及製商整合研究中心主任

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Lawrence Baxter 杜克大學法學院教授

杜克大學法學院教授

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稽核方法論與技術 ( Audit Methodology vs. Technology )

(2009-10-23 15:42:11 Dr. Hart Will)

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「對有槌子的人來說,每個東西都像釘子」這句玩笑話描述了無腦地使用工具和技術,但我們依然很意外地得知,其實在運用許多常用的技術時,使用者並沒有適切的使用理由或考量到使用的後果。另一方面,技術同樣可以被用來矇騙其他技術,也可以用來掩飾某些意圖。譬如說,有人可能會蒐集所有與事件、目標、狀態與主體有關的不同資料,然後使用電腦篩選或彙總,以此來隱藏真相而非揭露真相。我們似乎太常忘記機器並沒有心智,也太常忘記心智其實能使機器被誤用或善用。知道這個差異是很關鍵的一件事,而且需要心智與技術上的付出和資源,像是猜測、實驗、想像力、語言、觀察力、測量能力、與邏輯推理。純工具論其實是心智上的破產。
“To someone with a hammer everything looks like a nail” characterizes the mindless use of tools and techniques jokingly, but it is surprising to find technology used all too frequently without proper reasons or thoughts about the consequences. On the other hand, technology can also be used to deceive others and to disguise ones intentions. For example, all kinds of data are collected about events, objects, states and subjects and filtered or summarized by means of computers in ways that are hiding the truth rather than illuminating it. We seem to forget all too frequently that machines do not have minds and that minds can either misuse machines or use them properly. Knowing the difference is crucial and requires mental and methodological efforts and resources such as powers of conjecture, experimentation, imagination, language, observation, measurement, and logical reasoning. - Pure instrumentalism is mental bankruptcy.



稽核代表至少使用以下兩種方式,提供技術性質的責任資訊之擔保給接受者:(1) 當它為會計資訊時,會計師使用目標語言、並由 ( 財務 ) 會計分類系統與 ( 單式、複式、多式簿記 ) 的處理方式與技術產生擔保;(2) 當它為電腦基礎的會計資訊時,會計師、簿記人員、或資料管理者 ( 以及這些人所聘請的任何一位用來產生原始碼或機器語言的程式設計師 ) 使用任何的程式語言呈現之,以便能夠搜集、儲存、篩選交易資料、並顯示財務的良窳。為了提供責任資訊之擔保,我們需要存取任何攸關證據、並以批判的角度評估之;然而,像這樣的心智與技術上的能力,並不足以提供經濟活動與行為,一些令人心服口服且滿意的解釋。知道事情是如何完成的,並不能解釋它為什麼會以這個特定的方法完成,也無法解釋它是否被恰當且正確地完成。我們需要稽核的方法論以作為瞭解和控制會計方法與技術之管道。
Auditing is meant to provide assurances to the recipients of accountability information which is technological in nature in at least two ways: (1) As accounting information it is expressed in the object language of accountants and generated by means of (financial) accounting classification systems and (single, double or multiple-entry) processing methods and technology; and (2) as computer-based accounting information it is expressed in terms of any programming language used by accountants, bookkeepers or data administrators (and any programmers employed by them for generating source code and object code) in order to collect, store, and filter transaction data and to model financial success or failure. To give assurances about accountability information requires access to, and to critical assessment of, any relevant evidence; however, such mental and technological capabilities are not sufficient for providing assurances as convincing and satisfactory explanations of economic actions and behavior. Knowing how something was done does not explain why it was done in a specific manner and not otherwise or whether it was done appropriately and correctly. We need audit methodology as a way of understanding and controlling accounting methods and technologies.



唯有心智可以瞭解複雜環境中不同的組織狀態,以及明白任何遭遇到的挑戰之因果關係、概念、及技術。少數的確保可以簡單地從測試的演算公式與邏輯公式中,以及它們的執行結果中得到。獲得確保與知識的行為,在本質上是一個持續進行的語境發現過程,此過程被有意識的擔保者與知識搜尋者應用,而不是靠著預先使用程式設定好的 ( 無腦的 ) 機器所執行的例行公事。與傳統的稽核哲學相反,稽核遠比應用邏輯與「強調證據、支援財務報表與資料」更複雜!(Mautz and Sharaf, 1961:14)
Only a mind can know the various organizational states in their complex environmental context and be able to understand any changes causally, conceptually, contextually and technologically. Few assurances can be simply derived from an algorithmic or logical formulation of tests and their subsequent execution applied to evidence. To gain assurances and knowledge is essentially an on-going contextual discovery process applied by mindful assurors or knowledge seekers rather than the execution of pre-programmed (mindless) machine routines. Contrary to the traditional Philosophy of Auditing, auditing is more complex than applying logic and to “emphasize proof, the support of financial statements and data.” (Mautz and Sharaf, 1961:14)!



為了使我們對於運氣的依賴最小化,並有目地的應用邏輯,我們需要更高的層次的認知策略,像是批判性思考 ( 發現模式 ) 、邏輯推理 ( 判斷模式 ) 、或理性的批判 ( 結合以上兩者 ),以便能用特定的內容來為最佳的 ( 可能的 ) 解釋背書 ( Fetzer 2005: 19 )。這種替代的稽核觀念有很長的歷史 ( ASOBAC 1972, Will 1974 ),它造成稽核軟體的設計與導入,是將之作為一種後設語言 ( e.g., Will, 1975, 1983 ),以支持透明的知識擴展發現模式;也作為一種邏輯推理,以支持維護真理的判斷模式 ( Fetzer 1981, 1990: 231 )-以上兩者皆為「內聯」( 對管理者 ) 與「並行」( 對稽核與確保 )。
To minimize our dependency on luck and to apply logic purposefully requires higher order cognitive strategies like critical thinking (in discovery mode) and logical reasoning (in judgment node) or rational criticism (combining both methods) in support of best (possible) explanations in specific contexts (Fetzer 2005: 19). This alternative conceptualization of auditing has a long history (ASOBAC 1972, Will 1974) and resulted in the design and interactive implementations of audit software as a meta-language (e.g., Will, 1975, 1983) in support of transparent knowledge expanding discovery mode and logical reasoning as truth preserving judgment mode (Fetzer 1981, 1990: 231) - both “in-line” (for controllership) and “in parallel” (for audit and assurance).



內部控制系統 ( ICS ) 被人最普遍認為是種後設資訊系統,因為他們被設計來保護目標資訊 ( 這些資訊可能完全由機器自動產出 ) 的接受者之權利。不過,組織的參與者需要負責 ( 至少要對彼此負責 ) 確定適當的資料有被收集到、任何驅動出的資訊可被信任且其為真,或者至少沒有明顯錯誤。因此,內控系統應該監控所有組織參與者所做之與經濟相關且可擔負責任的行為。為了能夠規範系統,以避免發生錯誤、失敗、故障,我們需要監控活動與行為,並將這些活動與行為文件化,以應付螢幕中的「模範行為」。舉例來說,在一個高度網路化的組織中,我們可以透過網路直接連結我們的供應商與客戶,任何訊息都會透過電子網路變成「廣義的交易」,它們可能會被用以解釋組織中與跨組織間到底發生了什麼事,以及為何會發生這些事。
Internal control systems (ICS) are best understood as meta-information systems since they are designed to protect the rights of the recipients of any object information that may be completely machine-processed. Nevertheless, organizational participants are responsible (at least to each other) for making sure that the appropriate data are collected and that any information derived can be believed and is true or at least not obviously false. Thus, ICS ought to monitor all economically relevant and accountable behavior of any and all participants in an organization. To be able to regulate the system in case of errors, failures, and malfunctions requires monitoring and documenting actions and behavior against a screen of “model behavior.” For example, in a highly networked organization with direct links to its suppliers and customers any messages via the electronic network become “transactions in a broad sense” since they may be used to explain what really happened organizationally and inter-organizationally and why.



因此,稽核在方法論上至少有兩方面的付出:(1)「稽核 I」是檢驗支持會計資訊的文件 ( 後設語言的任務 );(2) 「稽核 II」是為文件的內容,像是成本、顧客、投資人、放款人、價格、產品、銷售、服務、股票、供應商、價值等,檢驗其記載的東西是真的存在 ( 實證的任務 )。以上兩者的發現會進入稽核意見,它忠實地解釋 ( 根據所有可使用的攸關證據 ) 組織中哪些事情完成了,這不只僅是在某些情況下,有意追求合法的組織目標與合理性而已。它也在組織與其環境或其市場的法律架構下,考慮組織行動與行為的道德。我們應該要記住,稽核是在組織內 ( 內部稽核 ) 或社會環境中 ( 外部稽核 ) ,「根據不同個案,使用不同處理方式」,如我在先前文章中所說的。稽核需要的不僅是工具!
Thus, auditing is methodologically at least a two-pronged effort: (1) "Auditing I" as checking the documents that support the accounting information (a meta-linguistic task), and (2) "Auditing II" as checking for the existence of the things for which the documents stand such as costs, customers, investors, lenders, prices, products, sales, services, stocks, suppliers, values, etc. (an empirical task). The findings of both kinds of audit tasks flow into an audit opinion that explains truthfully (based on all available relevant evidence) that what was done in an organization was not only intentional in the pursuit of the legitimate organizational objectives and reasonable under the circumstances. It may also consider the ethics of organizational actions and behavior within the legal framework of the organization and its environment or market. It should be remembered that auditing is a “case by case” effort within an organizational (internal auditing) or societal setting (external auditing) as explained in the previous blogs. It requires more than instruments!



稽核人員僅為「後設報告提供者」而非法律、政策和規範的「執法人員」,例如組織管理、政府或執法機關的成員。稽核人員僅擁有理性批判及合理懷疑的權利,並使用可取得的工具以執行發掘與評斷的任務,但他們對於資訊與內部控制的解釋卻一定要合理且可供驗證,以確定其可提供擔保。因此,稽核軟體也協助監控所有的稽核活動,而監控所產生的日誌可以被合法的執法人員用來進行後續追蹤,當有規則外的例外狀況發生時,執法人員可以立刻被告知。
Auditors are therefore merely “meta-reporters” and not “enforcers” of laws, policies and regulations, like members of an organizational management, a government or a police force. Auditors have only the powers of rational criticism and healthy skepticism and the tools available for discovery and judgment, but their explanations of information and internal controls must be reasonable and testable as well to be assuring. Audit software therefore also monitors all auditing activities and these logs can be used for follow-up by legitimate enforcers who can be immediately notified about exceptions from the rules.



總的說來,用來做為確保用途的稽核工作,是個複雜的認知與溝通任務。稽核方法論一定要包含會計與稽核技術的應用程式。不像會計是個數學與計算的流程,稽核技術永遠不會只是單純的演算法,也不會只是自動化或例行性的工作;它不會只是個使用元語言去建立支持數字的文件,也不只會是個用來驗證--或者,誇張一點,用來偽造--文件本身的實證任務,在可能性與可行性上皆是如此。
In summary, auditing as assurance is a complex cognitive and communication task. Audit methodology must embrace the application of accounting and audit technology. Unlike accounting as a mathematical and computational procedure, audit technology and can never become purely algorithmic, automatic or routine, neither as a meta-linguistic effort to establish documentary support for numbers nor as an empirical task devoted to verifying--or, better, attempting to falsify--those documents themselves to the extent possible and feasible.


  
© Copyright 2009 by Hart J. Will


翻譯:中正會資所 汪修平

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