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Financial Executives Adapting Controls and Financial Reporting to Overcome Global Pandemic Challenges

Cyber Security a Top Risk Concern

Cyber security a top risk concern


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Cyber security risks and additional financial reporting controls brought about by the global health crisis and a virtual work environment kept financial executives up at night, according to a survey by U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm KPMG LLP.

More than 91 percent of the financial executives surveyed during KPMG’s 30th Annual Accounting & Financial Reporting Symposium said that the global health crisis had an impact on their financial reporting processes.

Download a PDF of our survey results here.

“It’s no surprise that COVID-19, and the resulting changes to companies’ financial reporting and controls, were top of mind for most financial executives,” said KPMG National Managing Partner - Audit Quality and Professional Practice Christian Peo. “Just as companies have thought through and will continue to think through changes in processes and controls, auditors have had to work through changes in planning and executing our audits during the pandemic.”

The Symposium, held virtually for the first time, drew over 400 participants from across the country and provided financial executives with valuable insights on how to successfully navigate the rapidly evolving business environment. Each year, the Symposium offers in-depth updates on important financial accounting and reporting developments from the past year, as well as insights into what to expect in the future.

“This year’s Symposium featured a network of KPMG thought leaders who shared the latest information about going concern, discontinued operations, business combinations, environmental, social and governance issues and leadership,” said KPMG National Managing Partner - Audit Operations and Execution Bill Tomazin. “These topics are important for financial executives to consider when focusing on financial reporting ahead of the close of the calendar year.”

The survey also found:

  • 53 percent of respondents said that disclosures around risks, management discussion and analysis, liquidity and other trends were the COVID-19 issues that required the most significant time investment.
  • 87 percent identified cyber incidents as the top risk to their organization.
  • A little over half of respondents said that their concerns about cyber security have increased in the past year.
  • 79 percent said that digital transformation is important or extremely important to their company.
  • Regulatory mandates, which had been the leading concern last year, ranked second, with nearly 20 percent of respondents listing it as a top concern.

KPMG’s 31st Annual Accounting & Financial Reporting Symposium will be held November 17-19, 2021. To learn more and to register, go to

About KPMG Executive Education

From basic and advanced technical accounting courses and seminars for CPE credit to in-depth conferences, KPMG Executive Education provides a range of effective continuing education learning experiences for corporate executives and their staffs in the accounting, finance, and business management professions.


KPMG LLP is the U.S. firm of the KPMG global organization of independent professional services firms providing audit, tax and advisory services. The KPMG global organization operates in 146 countries and territories and has close to 227,000 people working in member firms around the world. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such. KPMG International Limited is a private English company limited by guarantee. KPMG International Limited and its related entities do not provide services to clients.

KPMG is widely recognized for being a great place to work and build a career. Our people share a sense of purpose in the work we do, and a strong commitment to community service, inclusion and diversity, and eradicating childhood illiteracy. Learn more at


Elizabeth Lynch KPMG LLP  

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