Why Secure Document Storage is Essential for Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance
Wed, May 17, 2017
By: Steve Clopton
You’ve probably heard of this compliance regulation before, but do you really know what it means? Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance is a critical step in the accounting and auditing processes of public companies.
However, some of the Act’s provisions also apply to private companies. Even accidently destroying documents required under the act can lead to repercussions, so every business needs to take steps to ensure proper compliance.
Let’s start with some background.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act was enacted by Congress in 2002, in response to major corporate accounting scandals at Tyco, Enron and WorldCom. These companies committed widespread accounting fraud to disguise losses and Sarbanes-Oxley sought to improve accounting and disclosure practices of public companies.
What does Sarbanes-Oxley compliance mean for your private company?
Private companies aren’t exempt from Sarbanes-Oxley compliance. Appropriate document retention practices are required of all companies because of a criminal liability provision, which prohibits the alteration or destruction of documents with intent to impede a federal investigation. While companies may not anticipate any type of federal investigation, it’s critical that all companies adopt document retention schedules compliant with the law. Compliance is especially important for any private companies considering an initial public offering, acquisition by a public company or that deal with venture capital investment.
Yet, it’s understandably difficult for small private businesses to stay up to date with the latest compliance practices and maintain a proper retention schedule. That’s where a reputable records management partner comes in. Professional records management eliminates the guesswork from records retention and helps all companies, especially in strict or complex financial industries, remain compliant.
Ensure compliance with a professional records management partner
A certified records management partner stays up to date on the latest federal regulations and ensures your business remains compliant with major legislation like Sarbanes-Oxley. Working with a document management expert can help your business effectively track the lifecycle of your documents and protect your company from litigation.
The key to this process is records retention scheduling. When documents reach the end of their useful lifecycle, a records management partner will confidentially destroy them and provide you with a certificate of destruction. If certain files must remain in paper format for compliance purposes, your partner will provide secure document storage offsite, which both frees up space in the office and provides peace of mind.
Gilmore Services stays on top of regulatory mandates to help support your compliance strategy. Our records management program includes a proven Release of Information (ROI) process and Records Retention Scheduling to store and destroy confidential information in compliance with industry standards.
Contact us to learn more about automating your records management plan to remain compliant within your industry, while gaining more the time to focus on your other important business tasks.