The auditor’s decisions on the nature, timing and extent of audit procedures will impact on the evidence to be obtained. The choice of procedures will depend on the risk assessment or problem analysis.

Audit evidence is any information used by the auditor to determine whether the subject matter complies with the applicable criteria. Evidence may take many forms, such as electronic and paper records of transactions, written and electronic communication with outsiders, observations by the auditor, and oral or written testimony by the audited entity. Methods of obtaining audit evidence can include inspection, observation, inquiry, confirmation, recalculation, reperformance, analytical procedures and/or other research techniques.
Evidence should be both sufficient (quantity) to persuade a knowledgeable person that the findings are reasonable, and appropriate (quality) – i.e. relevant, valid and reliable. The auditor’s assessment of the evidence should be objective, fair and balanced. Preliminary findings should be communicated to and discussed with the audited entity to confirm their validity.

The auditor must respect all requirements regarding confidentiality.

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