Definition of a Significant Deficiency
We are requesting additional comment on the definition of the term ``significant deficiency.'' Because this term is used in the Commission's rules implementing Section 302 and Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, we believe that a definition of this term should also be in the Commission's rules, in addition to being in the auditing standards.
Commission Guidance Regarding Management's Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting Under Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
The SEC is publishing this interpretive release to provide guidance for management regarding its evaluation and assessment of internal control over financial reporting. The guidance sets forth an approach by which management can conduct a top-down, risk-based evaluation of internal control over financial reporting. An evaluation that complies with this interpretive guidance is one way to satisfy the evaluation requirements of Rules 13a-15(c) and 15d-15(c) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Amendments to Rules Regarding Management's Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting
We are adopting an amendment to our rules to clarify that an evaluation which complies with the Commission's interpretive guidance published in this issue of the Federal Register in Release No. 34-55929 is one way to satisfy the requirement for management to evaluate the effectiveness of the issuer's internal control over financial reporting. We are also amending our rules to define the term material weakness and to revise the requirements regarding the auditor's attestation report on the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting. The amendments are intended to facilitate more effective and efficient evaluations of internal control over financial reporting by management and auditors.