American Institute of CLOUD Auditors
The American Institute of CLOUD Auditors (AiCA) is a consortium of IT professionals, Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), and telecommunications experts who have committed to pooling their resources in the interest of the global public community.
With e-commerce and CLOUD technology obscuring international boundaries, the business world has become more interconnected and complex. Specifically, the advent of the CLOUD has significantly changed the way financial statements auditing is conducted. When companies and government entities migrate their information assets to the CLOUD, data that is stored in their private data center is moved to remote geographical locations around the world. This characteristic of CLOUD technology poses a challenge for financial statement auditors because of the complexities, agility, and rapid evolution of CLOUD technologies. The fact that auditors are not always aware of the physical location of their clients' data is another issue.
The current financial auditing standards and methods that are taught in colleges and universities have become obsolete because business work activities that were once performed by humans are being performed by computer systems in cyberspace. Furthermore, financial auditors are taught to conduct testing by observation, inspection, and review of paper-based evidence. This approach to auditing renders information stored in the CLOUD, computer program functions and electronic system operations opaque to many auditors.
National and international statutes and regulatory requirements mandate that accountants who are engaged in the practice of public accountancy attest to the operating effectiveness of the computer systems that companies and government agencies use to run their business operations. However, CLOUD technology continues to widen the divide between the accounting profession and the Information Technology industry.
Understanding the need to bridge the technological divide, the AiCA has developed a standardized framework for auditing financial statement in the CLOUD Ecosystem. This financial auditing framework defines the way financial statement auditors carry out due diligence in attesting to the fair presentation of the financial position and the result of operations of a business or government that employs CLOUD technologies. We have designed this framework in accordance with the Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act of the United States Congress (which most westernized countries have accepted as their de facto standard), the United States Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS), the United States Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS), and the International Standards on Auditing (ISA). In our design of the framework we considered AICPA SAS 104-111, PCAOB AS5, AICPA SSAE 16 SOC 1, AT 101 SOC 2, SOC 3, COSO, COBIT, and applicable IS0 standards and their related control requirements.
In addition to developing this auditing framework, the AiCA also offers courses for auditors (see "Training"). Our Certified CLOUD Financial Auditor (CCFA) certification program is uniquely designed to cross-train accountants in the fields of Information Systems Management and IT auditing, specifically focusing on auditing financial statements in the CLOUD ecosystem.
Lastly, our textbooks provide clear and detailed information and instructions for auditing in the CLOUD, and they are updated regularly as technology and standards evolve (see "Publications").
Click "About Us" to learn more about the AiCA's goals, background, and membership.