According to a recent article in the Journal of Accountancy, securing their information ranks as the top priority for US and Canadian CPAs. This from a finding of the 25th Anniversary North American Top Technology Initiatives Survey released by the AICPA and the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.
The results are based on over 3,000 Accountants, Business Managers, and CPAs surveyed. This is an interesting, yet important change in priorities. With more and more news stories about leaks and exposure of PII (Personal Identifiable Information - ie: names, social security numbers, credit card info, etc.) it seems that the accounting profession has take notice of this important issue and risen it back to the top of the list.
In addition, data management ranked second, just ahead of “ensuring privacy,” “managing IT risks and compliance,” and “preventing and responding to computer fraud.”
According to the survey, the following lists the top 10 technology priorities for US Accounting professionals:
- Securing the IT environment
- Managing and retaining data
- Ensuring privacy
- Managing IT risks and compliance
- Preventing and responding to computer fraud
- Enabling decision support and analytics
- Managing system implementations
- Governing and managing IT investment/spending
- Managing vendors and service providers
- Leveraging emerging technologies
While last year "managing and retaining data" was the top issue, it's interesting to note that security yet again has moved back to the top of the list. This coincides, anecdotally, with our own findings as we're performing more and more Security Assessments these days for CPA and Accounting firms (as well as Investment Advisor firms).
Security is and should be a top priority for CPAs, Accountants, and Business Managers and one that can't be understated.
Have you had a security threat assessment done on your information technology infrastructure or related practices and processes? How has your Los Angeles accounting firm evolved from when it was conducted?
Do you see having another such assessment take place in future? Please share your thoughts in the section for Comments below.
And to follow-through on the tips introduced in this article, be sure to download your free guide, 12 Ways for CPA Firms in LA to Utilize Technology More Efficiently.