Alteration of Digital records
As explained, in digital records, data is recorded in electronic media. So, on any alteration of data, previous data is overwritten by new data leaving no trace of original data. So, such a system should have sufficient checks and balances to prevent unauthorised alterations, while allowing genuine alterations. Audit Log maintains data about Alterations for tracking and tracing.
In Manually written Accounts Books on paper, alterations are visible, but digital records may be altered any time, without leaving any trace. Consequently, the need of Audit Trail / Audit Log has evolved to keep track of alterations made in digital records.
What is Audit Trail / Audit Log
Audit Log is a record of all alterations made in Accounting Data. Audit Log records the reference of data altered, date of alteration and other info to trace and track the alteration. The organisation should not disable Audit Log features and preserve Audit Trail as part of Accounts Books.
The MCA notification regarding Audit Trail was originally issued on 24th March 21, to come into effect from 1st April 21. However, it was deferred till 1st April 22, and then subsequently deferred again to 1st April 23.
The Companies (Accounts) Amendment rules, 2021 require that every Company using Accounting Software to maintain Accounts Books must maintain Audit Trail of Date of every change in Accounting transaction records.
While discussing History of Tally Accounting Software, we cited various novel methods to facilitate alteration of Accounts Books using Tally, eliminating traces and even wrinkles arising from Alteration of Accounts Books. In this connection, we also stressed upon the need of Audit Trail (Audit Log) to race unauthorized and malicious changes, if any.
Audit Trail (Log) in Tally PRIME
Complying to MCA guidelines, Tally incorporated Audit Log Features in Tally PRIME rel 2.1, providing following key features.
- Option to enable Audit Log Feature. After enabling, Audit Log cannot be disabled
- Track the edits for each Master and Transaction (Voucher).
- Record the Date and username of all alterations.
- Difference report to show the elements of the version that have been modified
- Reports would filter edited transactions