Audit and Control Management Server 2013: "Exception has been thrown by the target of an invocation" error while processing files or with Spreadsheet Compare


Audit and Control Management Server (ACM) 2013 or Spreadsheet Compare may show this error:


Exception has been thrown by the target of an invocation.



ACM and Spreadsheet Compare use MD5 encryption which is not compliant with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as compliant with the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS).

If FIPS enforcement is turned on, ACM and Spreadsheet Compare will not work. The FIPS enforcement setting can be accessed in the Local Security Policy or in the registry.

To view the setting in Local Security Policy, go to Administrative Tools > Local Security Policy > Security Options and look for System cryptography: Use FIPS compliant algorithms for encryption, hashing, and signing. In the example below, it shows that it is Enabled:

To check the Registry setting, look for the value for:


If the value is 1, FIPS enforcement enabled.



To use Local Security Policy to change the setting, open Administrative Tools > Local Security Policy > Security Options, right click System cryptography: Use FIPS compliant algorithms... and select Properties. Click Disabled, and then click OK.

To use the Regsitry instead, open it using regedit.exe and set this value to 0:



You will need to restart the Spreadsheet Processor in ACM or the Spreadsheet Compare client for the changes to take effect.

Before you make these changes, we recommend that you evaluate the risks that are associated with implementing this process in your particular environment. If you decide to implement this process, take any appropriate additional steps to help protect the system. We recommend that you use this process only if you really require this process.

Comments (3)

  1. kumaresh says:

    Value is already set to 0 then why this message is coming while using application

  2. badelman says:

    This page does not explain why or whether the Spreadsheet Compare tool is actually directly affected by ACM’s non-compliance with the FIPS. Is there any connection between the applications, or is the root cause of the Spreadsheet Compare tool showing the same error entirely separate and contained within its own coding? Do the 2 applications use a common library file? What is the prospect for ACM being updated to comply with the standard?

    1. badelman: ACM and Spreadsheet Compare are based on the same code. They use the same comparing engine to determine the differences between two workbooks, which is why both show the same error if FIPS enforcement is enabled. There are no current plans to change the encryption that is compliant with FIPS.

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