Requirement #1: The information must remain complete and unaltered, except for the addition of any endorsement and any change that arises in the normal course of communication, storage and display.
Requirement #2: Your records must be easily accessible to SARS. They must be in a format SARS can read and analyse. If you send documents to SARS, it must be able to open them without difficulty, says the Practical Accountancy Loose Leaf Service.
Requirement #3: You must make your records available to SARS for it to get any information that could be related to a taxable event or to see if you've filed or submitted your returns correctly (section 3 of the Tax Admin Act).
This means you must keep and maintain all your records within South Africa. If you can't, you must get permission from a senior SARS official to store them outside of South Africa. For example, if your company's a branch of a foreign head office.
If you fail to stick to these requirements, you'll have penalties coming your way. So make sure the way you keep accounting records is above board now that you know the requirements.