A survey by the American Institute of CPAs predicted that information security management would become the most important initiative affecting IT strategy, investment and implementation over the next 12 to 18 months.

In second place came IT governance, followed by business continuity management and disaster recovery planning at No. 3, and privacy management at No. 4.

"We believe this year's list is reflective of our environment, with the top four technology initiatives relating to strategies that safeguard an organization's assets and ensure its well being," said Barry Melancon, president and CEO of the AICPA, in a statement.

The institute asked 1,169 finance, accounting and technology participants to rank 29 technology initiatives they felt would have the most significant impact on their organizations. The survey polled members of the AICPA who have Certified Information Technology Professional credentials and IT Section members, as well as members of the Institute of Internal Auditors, the Information Systems Audit and Control Association and the Information Technology Alliance.

The complete list in order is:

1. Information security management
2. IT governance
3. Business continuity management and disaster recovery planning
4. Privacy management
5. Business process improvement, workflow and process exceptions alerts
6. Identity and access management
7. Conforming to assurance and compliance standards
8. Business intelligence
9. Mobile and remote computing
10. Document, forms, content and knowledge management

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