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What You Must Know About Ssae 16?
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SSAE 16 is Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements 16. It is a regulation that is created by the Auditing Standards Board of American Institute of Certified Public Accounts. This regulation is created for redefining and updating how service companies report on the control of compliances.
SSAE 16 is a reporting standard applicable for all service auditors’ reports dated June 15th 2011 and beyond. Before SSAE 16, there was SAS 70 which was there since April 1992. SSAE 16 was formally issued in April 2010 which was effective from June 15th, 2011.
Difference between SSAE 16 and SAS 70
SSAE 16 needs the management of the service company to give a written assertion to the auditor that the descriptions they are giving are accurately representing their organizational system. The organizational system description consists of services offered by the organization and any other or all the operational activities that could affect the customers’ services. The organization has to state that the description that they have provided honestly describes their control objectives and the time limit within which these objectives are to be evaluated.
SSAE 16 was drafted so that US service organization reporting standard could be updated so that it reflects and complies with the new international service organization reporting standard ISAE 3402.
Service Organizations’ benefits
Service organizations are to get significant benefits from SSAE 16 reporting. A service auditor’s report can help a service organization to have trustworthy relationship with the users or customers. If the service organization does not have the Service Auditor’s Report then the organization may have to cater to various audit requests from its customers and their auditors. If the service organizations have to face the visits from the user auditors they it could be strenuous for the organization and its resources.
When the Service Auditor’s Report is with the service organization then all user organizations /customers and their auditors can get the same information thus almost all the needs of the user auditors can be satisfied well. SSAE 16 reporting can be done by professionals involved in the audit, risk and control services as they have experience in accounting, auditing and information security. SSAE 16 engagements help the service organization to get its control policies and control mechanisms to be evaluated and tested by a team or individual who is a third-party. This will actually help in improving the operations of the service organization.
Benefits of user organization
When any user organization gets a Service Auditor’s Report from its service organization then it is actually receiving the valuable information regarding the control policies and processes of those service organizations and can also find out how effective these controls are. The user organization gets the detailed description of the controls of the service organization and also the checking whether these were designed properly, placed in their operation and was effective.
The Service Auditor’s Report has to be submitted by the user organization to their auditors so that the user auditor could plan the audit of the financial statements of the user organization.
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