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AICPA

Bell Canada Upgrades AICPA WebTrust

Communications giant Bell Canada has decided to upgrade its WebTrust program to Version 2.0, the newest format for the electronic verification program developed by the American Institute of CPAs.Enhancements to the new version includes principles and criteria for privacy protection, and resolving any customer or client problems.

AICPA Seeks Volunteer Testers for Online Exam

The American Institute of CPAs has issued a call for volunteers to test questions that may be included in the future online CPA Exam. AICPA is considering the online exam to replace the old paper-based format to more accurately reflect the CPA environment by testing on day-to-day issues within the CPA profession.Participants will provide feedback to AICPA on their exam experience, levels of difficulty, practical applications and more.

AICPA Marks 20 Years of Technology Conference

Back when CPAs and accountants could barely work computers, let alone even thinking about using the Internet to communicate with clients and customers, AICPA held its first computer and technology conference.Now, 20 years later, the Institute is celebrating 20 years with its upcoming conference, May 10-12 in Atlanta, GA. Recommended CPE credit is 23-25 hours.So what's changed in 20 years? Plenty!

Busy Block Site Mirrors CPA Top Ten Technologies

CPAs have taken the initiative to identify this as an ongoing problem with e-Commerce. The AICPA has identified "high availability and resiliency of systems" as one of the Top Ten Technology Issues affecting the accounting profession for 2000.This issue made the news again this week when H&R Block had to close its Internet site temporarily because of the tremendous number of taxpayers who wanted to fle their return virtually.
Community News

AICPA Requires Mandatory Quality Control Systems

Today, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) announced that it is establishing requirements for mandatory quality control systems for the five largest auditing firms to enhance compliance with existing independence rules.
A&A

AICPA Teams Up With Fidelity Investments

The American Institute of CPAs has announced an exclusive arrangement with financial giant Fidelity Investments Brokerage Group to provide services and support to AICPA members who are building investment advisory practices.Fidelity will be the exclusive provider of custody and clearing services for the AICPA's Center for Investment Advisory Services.Fidelity will provide brokerage services, training, business development assistance, back-office support and ongoing CPA market developme

Former AICPA Chair Named to Lancer Board

Olivia F. Kirtley, immediate past chair of the AICPA Board of Directors, has been named to the board of directors for the Lancer Corporation, a manufacturer of beverage dispensing equipment.Kirtley finished her AICPA term in October 1999 when the chair position was assumed by Robert Elliott. Among her distinctions as chair was her service as both the first woman and the first CPA in industry to hold the position.Kirtley is vice president of the Louisville, KY-based Vermont American Corporation, a company that manufacturers power tool accessories.

AICPA Publishes New Peer Review Standards

At its meeting last month, the AICPA Peer Review Board adopted revisions for the AICPA Standards for Performing and Reporting on Peer Reviews (Standards).

New WebTrust-ISP Certification Available

The AICPA has announced another phase for its WebTrust program with a new verification service designed soley for Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Also released was WebTrust 2.0, the follow-up program to the original WebTrust package.The new program for ISPs is similar in format to the original WebTrust, but intended specifically for online hosts.

New IT Accredtiation Announced by AICPA

CPAs involved in technology will want to take notice to the recent announcement made by AICPA on a new accreditation just for professionals involved in technology, strategic planning, implementation, management and business strategies.A point system for the accreditation is structured to allow veteran IT professionals, as well as novices, into the realm of reaching the mark.The accreditation also speaks to the services and competencies outlined with the new CPA Vision.

New Independence Requirements For Auditors Approved

In response to recent attacks by the SEC on perceived independence problems across the auditing profession, the AICPA today approved new objectivity requirements for auditors who audit public companies.Some of the new requirements include:Auditing firms must set up an internal computer database of restricted investments in public clients;Independence policies must be established regarding financial relationships between the company and the firm, to include the firm's benefit plans, its staff and

New Chair of AICPA Focuses on Technology and Vision

As reported last week, Robert K. Elliott has assumed the chairmanship of AICPA, effectively becoming the first chair for the 21st Century. He succeeds former chair Olivia Kirtley. The appointment was made official during AICPA's Fall Council meeting in Seattle, WA.On the top of Elliott's agenda is placing technology in the hands of the Institute's 330,000 members by demonstrating the profession's ability to adapt to an ever-changing landscape and delivery value-added services to clients and employers.

AICPA Plans Shift To Web Based CPE

Online Continuing Professional Education for CPAs will likely become mainstream when the American Institute of CPAs begins offering over 150 one- and two-hour self study courses over the Web by the middle of next year.Speaking at its annual meeting this week, AICPA President Barry Melancon announced several bold Internet initiatives for the Institute, including the fulfillment of a vision of a completely web-based profession in several years time.

New Mexico CPA Society Awards Scholarships

Accounting students attending New Mexico colleges and universities have been awarded a collective total of $42,000 in scholarships by the New Mexico Society of CPAs.The gifts also mark the largest amount ever given in student scholarships by the state CPA society.Colleges attended by students include the University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University, Eastern New Mexico University, New Mexico Highlands University and Western New Mexico University.Named scholarhips from the CPA society include the J.

SEC's Levitt "Gravely Concerned" Over Auditor Roles

For the first time in recent history, the Chairman of the SEC blasted the way that auditors do their jobs, and suggested the need for a full time self-regulatory body to ensure the credibility of audits.Addressing a blue ribbon panel investigating the effectiveness of audits, Levitt sharply criticized auditors as playing a major role in the disturbing trend of company's "managing" their earnings.Mr.

AICPA Proposes New Audit Standard

An exposure draft for a proposed standard just issued by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Auditing Standards Board focuses on improving communication between independent auditors and corporate audit committees. The draft is called Amendments to Statement on Auditing Standards No. 61, “Communication With Audit Committees, “ and Statement on Auditing Standards No.
Community News

Accounting Firms Consult to Verify Security of Web Sites

PricewaterhouseCoopers and Deloitte & Touche are two of several consultants who have lent their expertise in the Web site security arena and to the content of a report published by Plano, TX-based Entrust Technologies Inc. This is an issue CPAs should be knowledgeable about based on the CPA Vision vision statement and AICPA's WebTrust program.The
Technology

Mirroring WebTrust, Seal for Online Shopping Sites are More Popular

Just as the AICPA has enacted the WebTrust seal to demonstrate to the public that financial transactions over the Internet are secure, online shopping sites also are adopting various "seals of approval" for the sake of the public.A Harris poll found that less than 20 percent of online shoppers purchased goods or services over the Internet because they didn't want their credit cards exposed to unknown parties.

Public Companies Affected By New GAAP Rule

The AICPA is out to eliminate "diversity in practice" for insurance-related assessments for publicly-held companies. A new rule will force companies to immediately accrue estimates of financial liabilities for insurance-related assessments that are based on paid losses. The idea behind the practice is that it will make financial statements more uniform across companies.AICPA's Statement of Position 97-3 applies to financial statements for company fiscal years beginning after December 15, 1998.

Independent Audits' Effectiveness Surveyed by Public Oversight Board

More than 500 persons and organizations familiar with auditing or affected by an audit will be sent confidential questionnaires regarding the effectiveness of independent audits in protecting investors' interests.

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