Monitoring WebTrust seals
Once a Trust Services Seal is issued, the client may continue to display the seal on its web site provided the client obtains an updated, unqualified practitioner’s report on a regular basis. However, if the client is no longer in compliance, the client must remove the seal from its web site.
The interval between updates should never exceed twelve months. This interval may depend upon the complexity of the client’s operation; the frequency of significant changes to the client’s systems, policies and disclosures; and the practitioner’s professional judgment.
The seal will remain valid for one year, plus a ninety day grace period, unless it is revoked or suspended. The grace period is provided to allow sufficient time for completing the follow-up review.
Revoking or Suspending Seals
If the practitioner determines that the client’s systems, policies and disclosures fail to comply with the Trust Services Principles and Criteria at any time or if the client fails to renew the seal through a follow-up review at the end of one year, the practitioner will immediately notify the client and advise that the seal must be removed from the client’s web site and any printed or online materials. The practitioner will also suspend all the relevant links from the active Trust Services web site using the Seal Management System and notify the local institute of certified public accountants or equivalent.
A practitioner may restore a Trust Services Seal after it has been revoked or suspended if an unqualified report can be rendered. The practitioner may either reinstate the original report if it is once again accurate or issue a new report.
Suspending a Practitioner
The licensed institute will retain the right to revoke seals for a practitioner’s firm that is no longer a member in good standing. In this case, the licensed institute has the ability to revoke the seals that the practitioner’s firm is using and may also revoke those seals that the practitioner’s clients are using.