Xcentric Partners with Netwrix to Pass SOC 2 Audit

In preparation for our SOC 2 audit, we decided to partner with Netwrix (the first to introduce a visibility and governance platform that supports both on-premises and hybrid cloud IT environments) not only to pass the audit but also to better secure our clients’ data.

Netwrix Auditor is a visibility and governance platform that enables control over changes, configurations and access in hybrid cloud IT environments to protect data at rest regardless of its location.

Take a look at this short article and this case study by Netwrix on our recent collaboration. Here’s an excerpt form the article:

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Software Tool Spotlight: Make Audits Smoother with Suralink

Suralink is a cloud-based platform that combines the multiple tools that CPA firms traditionally use on audits and other complex engagements for document exchange and communicating with clients. Central to Suralink is a dynamic PBC needs list that is integrated into a secure file hosting platform. Layered on top of the needs list is audit and tax specific workflow plus the ability to communicate back and forth with clients regarding the status of individual requests and the overall engagement. A dashboard, timeline, and key data analytics provide partners and managers with a high-level view of each engagement for better decision making. Finally, firms can request, receive, track and manage all of their needs from a single platform while providing a better client experience.

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Phishing and Hacked Passwords: Top Causes for Last Year’s Security Breaches

Verizon released their ninth annual Data Breach Investigations Report (2016DBIR) last month, which reports on the major security breaches and methods used by hackers to compromise businesses and governmental organizations.  When it comes to hacking, organized crime syndicates lead the way with phishing email schemes that are culpable in 89% of security breaches, followed by “state-affiliated actors” which accounted for another 9% of attacks.

Phishing has transitioned from the “good ole” days when clicking on the link would take you to an obviously fake bank site to capture your login credentials.  The 2016DBIR study found that 70% to 90% of malware hitting an organization is “unique” to that organization, meaning that the hackers slightly modified the malware signature hashtags so it would look like a NEW virus, even though the malware impact was the same (loading ransomware, capturing login credentials, etc.).  This means that today’s stealthier version is usually customized to each company and tricks more victims into downloading a viable looking invoice or RFP request.

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New Dates: IT Partner Webinar Series

We have finalized the rescheduled dates for this webinar series. Thank you to everyone who has waited patiently.

This 3-part series focuses on helping IT Partners be better IT Partners to their firms. We have found in our years of serving accounting firms that often times the partner in charge of technology didn’t necessarily volunteer for the role and/or are distracted by their ‘day job.’ This series will better position people for success in their role and, in relatively short order, will catch them up to speed on the trending and important topics in the industry.

Registration is easy (and free)! When you sign up for one of these three webinars, you sign up for all of them. Click on any of the links below and fill out the form. So what are you waiting for? Register today!

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AICPA Practitioners Symposium and TECH+ Conference Golden Nuggets

The AICPA’s Practitioners Symposium and TECH+ Conference was recently held (June 5-8, 2016) at the ARIA Resort in Las Vegas to educate CPAs on the latest accounting profession trends and the information technology impacting their firms. Each year, attendees can find “golden nuggets” of information, technology, and processes that were not previously known and they are provided fresh looks at trends not previously considered. Below are a handful of takeaways garnered at this year’s conference with the hope that some may strike a chord with you and make you think in a different way.

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Firm Administrator Giveaway Winner!

Congratulations to Tammy Boring from Snyder & Company for winning our Firm Administrator Giveaway for a trip to Asheville, NC! We picked the winner yesterday and announced it at the CPAFMA National Practice Management Conference in Baltimore. Fortunately, our winner was at the conference and we were able to congratulate her in person.

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Firm Administrator Giveaway Ending Soon!

*This giveaway has ended.

We are selecting the winner of our Firm Administrator Giveaway this Thursday, so make sure to sign up before the contest closes at 3pm on June 30th. We love firm administrators and appreciate all that you do for your firms – this is just our way of saying thank you!

We will announce the winner at this year’s CPA Firm Management Association (formerly known as The Association for Accounting Administration “AAA”) conference in Baltimore.

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Tax Season Debrief: 6 Admin Questions to Consider

While clients seem to bring data in later each year and erroneous 1099s/K1s further increase workload compression, the 2016 tax season was actually one of the better ones from a technology perspective, with minimal changes being pushed by the government and tax application providers. This stability can lead firms into a lull thinking that their processes do not need to be re-evaluated, particularly in the administrative area which may get less attention when things seem to be going well. Summertime actually provides one of the best opportunities to re-evaluate administrative tax processes so new innovations can be piloted during the extension season and standardized by year-end. Firms should formerly debrief after each tax season and ask your administrative staff the following six questions to see if your firm can improve tax production processes.

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Register Before 2016 Cloud Conference Prices Increase

Make sure to grab a spot for this year’s Cloud Conference. This event is organized for Xcentric Cloud users. Join some of our team members, including our leadership team, and fellow users from CPA firms across the country.

Pricing for each attendee will increase on July 1, 2016, so register before to get a lower rate. Check out our Cloud Conference pages before purchasing tickets to view instructions on pricing for 2+ attendees from the same firm. Also, make sure you book your hotel room by August 1st to receive the discounted group rate.

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