Ask A-LIGN: Is SSAE 16 a Certification?

Answer: No, SSAE 16 is not a certification. Here’s why: It is incorrect to say that you are SSAE 16 certified, because there is not a certification awarded to you after the engagement. The appropriate wording would be to state, “we have received an unqualified (Type 1 or Type 2) SSAE 16 report as a result of a service auditor performing an audit in accordance with SSAE 16 on the services within the scope of our review.” Once we have issued a final report to our clients, we will then issue the AICPA SOC Logo Guidelines form. The guidelines will explain exactly who can use the logo, how to use it appropriately, and when you must end the use or display of the logo.

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A-LIGN 2013 Community Commitment

A-LIGN is proud to employ some of the most talented professionals in the industry who also dedicate their skills and talents to our community. Giving back to the community is a quality we value highly for all employees and in an effort to make volunteering more accessible, A-LIGN will now offer ‘community service days’ for all employees interested in participating. A-LIGN is allowing one business day out of the month for employees to volunteer at any charity of their choosing.

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Ask A-LIGN: Why is the SAS 70 audit still asked for? I thought it no longer existed?

Answer: Correct. The SAS 70 audit has been out of existence since June 15, 2011. Many organizations are still being asked for SAS 70, frankly, due to the fact of its nearly 20-year existence and lack of education surrounding the change of the standard. Here’s Why: Since SAS 70 has been around nearly 20 years, its terminology seems stuck in the written agreements of many organizations that have long-term contractual obligations. Transitioning SAS 70 out of audit terminology is going to take an effort from the profession, as well as, publicity of the profession to make sure that these organizations understand SSAE 16, its replacement of SAS 70, and what it brings to the table to align it more with an assertion based report rather than a direct reporting on the controls.

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Happy Holidays from A-LIGN

At the close of another year, we gratefully pause to wish you a warm and happy holiday season.   …

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Ask A-LIGN: Is my Organization Required to Obtain a Type 2 SSAE 16 Examination Annually?

Answer: This is a question we are asked frequently by our clients and prospective clients, and the answer is: It Depends. Here’s why: The SSAE 16 guidance states that the period of review, or time frame that the report covers, should be at least six (6) months in the case of a Type 2 SSAE 16 examination.  While this standard sets a minimum period of review, it can be set to cover any period of time over 6 months – i.e., six months, nine months or one year.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

At A-LIGN we never want to overlook an opportunity to appreciate all of our clients, partners, and friends.  Thanksgiving is the perfect time of year to tell you how grateful we are for your business and for the many relationships we continue to build.  We hope that you have a …

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A-LIGN: Raising Money for Junior Achievement (JA)

A-LIGN will be participating in this year’s 2012 JA Stars & Strikes Bowl-A-Thon on November 10, 2012.  By supporting the Bowl-A-Thon A-LIGN is helping to fund Junior Achievement’s programs, which aide to empower students from K-12th grade in the Tampa Bay area. Programs include, work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills. A-LIGN is proud to employ some of the most talented professionals in the industry who also dedicate their skills and talents to our community. Scott Price, A-LIGN's Managing Director, has been on the board of Junior Achievement for the past 10 years.

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Bundling your Compliance Needs

At A-LIGN we continue to develop our service offerings to better meet our clients needs.  If you are required to comply with multiple compliance standards we are able to offer bundled engagements that take advantage of the overlap between the various regulatory and compliance standards.  We provide our clients with the ability to deal with one audit firm for all of their compliance needs. This process can reduce the overall impact of the audit to your organization while reducing the engagement fees.

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Which Cloud Holds My Data?

One of the discussions brought up at this year’s AICPA Service Organization Controls (SOC) School was the issue of cloud computing and the effects it has on industries that are subjected to a SOC 1 or SOC 2 audit.  When it comes to cloud computing, subservice organizations may be involved in providing the operations that a service organization might perform.  This relationship is where the service organization and user entity could find themselves at risk. As experienced service auditors, we are able to look at the risks involved with the subservice organizations footprint and determine the best course of action for our service organization, i.e. our clients.

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