The Dangerous Secret in Cloud Accounting

Mark Kennedy
4 min readFeb 14

It is generally accepted that few consumers really read terms of service agreements from beginning to end. Only 15% of customers read terms of service agreements completely, according to a 2015 poll by the International Association of Privacy Professionals, and another 15% said they only skimmed them. The other 70% of respondents claimed they had never read them.

You never know when lightning will strike, are you prepared?

It’s crucial to keep in mind that terms of service agreements can be extensive and complicated, and many users might not completely comprehend the ramifications of the terms they are committing to. Because of this, several businesses have written their Terms of Service in simple terms.

Not reading terms of service agreements can have both positive and negative effects. Some of the positive effects include, you can start using the service right away. The most common and dangerous benefit is, “Ignorance is bliss.”

Failure to read the Terms of Service will have the greatest effect on your understanding of your rights and obligations. Users that fail to read these agreements knowingly consent to terms that are inappropriate for their business system plan, which frequently has unanticipated repercussions.

Take the time to read your terms of service, and look up the words that you aren’t sure about.

My favorite cloud accounting company is Xero, not just for its efficiency and ease of use but for its straightforward communication. Xero’s terms of service are not written in the usual legalese that would either put you to sleep or leave you wondering why you didn’t pay more attention in law class.

Here’s how Xero lets you know about one of your responsibilities.

“Data loss is an unavoidable risk when using any technology. You’re responsible for maintaining copies of your data entered into our services.”

Every company, including Xero, QBO, MYOB, and Sage, stipulates in their Terms of Service that you must at a minimum, pay the invoice, abide by local regulations, and back up the data you enter onto their platform. It’s worthwhile to study Xero’s Terms of Service, which, according to a word search, specify eleven “responsibilities.”

Mark Kennedy

President at WOWzer Technologies focused on automation and security for accountants and bookkeepers.