A compliance audit is a comprehensive review of an organization's adherence to regulatory guidelines. Independent accounting, security or IT consultants evaluate the strength and thoroughness of compliance preparations. Auditors review security polices, user access controls and risk management procedures over the course of a compliance audit.
Compliance audits can be required for a variety of reasons. A business may be frequently audited if it has broken laws in the past. It could be also be an occasional audit to make sure the business is on the up and up.