What is the PCAOB?
The PCAOB is a private-sector, non-profit corporation, created by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, to oversee the auditors of public companies in order to protect the interests of investors and further the public interest in the preparation of informative, fair, and independent audit reports.
Auditing Firm Oversight
All accounting firms that wish to prepare or issue audit reports on U.S. public companies (or to participate in such audits) must register with the PCAOB. The PCAOB Registration Page gives a list of registered accounting firms, forms, examples, FAQs, other registration documentation, and a link to online registration. Its Inspections section contains information about and reports on the Board’s continuing program of inspections of registered public accounting firms. Its Enforcement section explains its approach to investigations and includes lists of disciplinary proceedings.
The PCAOB also develops auditing standards. Of special interest is the guidance contained in the document An Audit of Internal Control Over Financial Reporting That Is Integrated with An Audit of Financial Statements. This provides guidelines to auditing firms performing Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404 audits.