KPMG Fined Record $25 Million in Exam-Cheating Scandal – WSJ

KPMG’s Netherlands unit agreed to pay a $25 million fine over claims of exam cheating and misinforming investigators, the largest monetary penalty imposed on an auditing firm by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.

KPMG Accountants NV failed to take adequate steps to identify and investigate misconduct in which employees provided answers or access to questions on exams, in violation of the PCAOB’s quality-control rules, the U.S. audit regulator said Wednesday. The tests for the firm’s mandatory training courses, which cover topics such as U.S. audit standards, professional ethics and independence, are aimed at helping auditors maintain their professional certifications to perform certain types of audits.

The answer-sharing occurred from 2017 to 2022 and involved hundreds of professionals, including partners and senior leaders such as the now former head of assurance, Marc Hogeboom, the PCAOB said. The firm repeatedly misrepresented its knowledge of the misconduct to the PCAOB, the regulator said.

Source: KPMG Fined Record $25 Million in Exam-Cheating Scandal – WSJ