Every publicly traded company in the United States as well as every publicly traded foreign company doing business in the United States is subject to the provisions of Sarbanes-Oxley. In addition, private companies that are preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) are also subject to the mandate.
TechTarget describes Sarbanes-Oxley in this way:
“The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (often shortened to SOX) is legislation enacted in response to the high-profile Enron and WorldCom financial scandals to protect shareholders and the general public from accounting errors and fraudulent practices in the enterprise. The act is administered by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which sets deadlines for compliance and publishes rules on requirements. Sarbanes-Oxley is not a set of business practices and does not specify how a business should store records; rather, it defines which records are to be stored and for how long.
The legislation not only affects the financial side of corporations, it also affects the IT departments whose job it is to store a corporation’s electronic records. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act states that all business records, including electronic records and electronic messages, must be saved for “not less than five years.” The consequences for non-compliance are fines, imprisonment, or both. IT departments are increasingly faced with the challenge of creating and maintaining a corporate records archive in a cost-effective fashion that satisfies the requirements put forth by the legislation.”
Read the complete article, including an FAQ: What is the impact of Sarbanes-Oxley on IT operations?
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