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Tech-Assisted Accounting in the New Year

Accounting technology has come a long way from spreadsheets and calculators.

With the vast number of regulations, rule changes and special exceptions in accounting standards, it would be virtually impossible for a CPA to do his or her job without at least a little help from

With the vast number of regulations, rule changes and special exceptions in accounting standards, it would be virtually impossible for a CPA to do his or her job without at least a little help from technology.

As the Journal of Accountancy reports, companies will have more options in 2012, with cloud computing serving as the major influence on most emerging software. Applications for mobile devices are common among consumers, but David Cieslak of Arxis Technology told the source that there would be more accounting- and finance-centric offerings.

Of course, with greater accessibility comes more risks to security, and regular anti-virus software, firewalls and passwords will be insufficient to protect client data.

J.Carlton Collins, a technology and accounting systems consultant and JoA contributor, notes that some CPAs are "still sending their email across the Internet naked and wide open to the public."

A downside to the proliferation of CPA technology is that people who may not be qualified to do financial reporting sometimes take it upon themselves to manage the books or investments. The Business Standard notes that if a company or individual chooses to oversee finances without the assistance of a financial advisor, it's vital to set goals and benchmarks before starting. With a clear roadmap, the organization will be able to monitor its progress and quickly respond if it does make an error.

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