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Risk in focus - hot topics for Internal Audit 2021 PDF Print E-mail

For the past five years Risk in Focus has sought to highlight the key risk areas identified by Chief Audit Executives (CAEs). The purpose of this publication is to help the internal audit profession prepare its independent risk assessment work, annual planning and even audit scoping by sharing the insights and learnings from the research. The board briefing is also available.

The report also points to ongoing concerns around companies’ ability to remain solvent as the world enters a recession. Amid depressed demand, financial, capital and liquidity risks have jumped up the agenda, with more than two in five (42%) of those surveyed including these within their top five risks – a 40% increase on last year.

The top 10 risks for Risk in Focus 2021 were:


  • Cybersecurity and data security (79%)
  • Regulatory change and compliance (59%)
  • Digitalisation, new technology and AI (51%)
  • Financial, capital and liquidity risks (42%)
  • Human capital and talent management (35%)
  • Disasters and crisis response (34%)
  • Macroeconomic and geopolitical uncertainty (33%)
  • Supply chains, outsourcing, and ‘nth’ party risk (26%)
  • Corporate governance and reporting (25%)
  • Communications, management and reputation (25%)
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