Q: Why have you developed this guidance?[QQ] A: Companies often include financial information on their websites with an electronic version of the auditors’ report. This is likely to be given further impetus by the recent Electronic Communications Order, which allows annual financial statements and reports to be distributed electronically.
This raises questions regarding auditor responsibilities, associations with other information on a website and the format of the electronic report itself. Bulletin 2001/1 aims to provide guidance.
Q: What are the main points? A: 1. When companies include the annual financial statements and the auditors’ report on their sites, auditors should check the electronic version is identical in content with hard copy accounts.
2. Where page numbering is not effective the bulletin recommends the auditors’ report describes, by name, the primary statements that comprise the audited statements.
3. Auditors are not required to review controls to ensure ongoing accuracy of a website.
Q: Where can I find out more? A: Guidance on electronic presentation has been issued by the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.
Find out more at www.icsa.org.uk APB bulletin at www.apb.org.uk.
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