Assurance can be either reasonable or limited.

Reasonable assurance is high but not absolute. The audit conclusion is expressed positively, conveying that, in the auditor's opinion, the subject matter is or is not compliant in all material respects, or, where relevant, that the subject matter information provides a true and fair view, in accordance with the applicable criteria.

When providing limited assurance, the audit conclusion states that, based on the procedures performed, nothing has come to the auditor’s attention to cause the auditor to believe that the subject matter is not in compliance with the applicable criteria. The procedures performed in a limited assurance audit are limited compared with what is necessary to obtain reasonable assurance, but the level of assurance is expected, in the auditor's professional judgement, to be meaningful to the intended users. A limited assurance report conveys the limited nature of the assurance provided.

INTOSAI ref. Fundamental Principles of Public-Sector Auditing(pdf) (ISSAI-100).
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