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The Legal Ombusdman Accreditation Project.

"Aristi's in-depth knowledge of information assurance standards and practices ensured that as an organisation our project was successful. Their expertise and professionalism were invaluable." Tim Craig Head of IT and Telecoms.

The Legal Ombudsman was established by the Office for Legal Complaints under the Legal Services Act 2007 as an independent expert to resolve consumer complaints about lawyers in England and Wales. They act as an impartial legal complaints handling service operating independently of the legal profession. Baskerville House, in the centre of Birmingham, was selected as the head office and a new IT infrastructure was procured through a consortium of service providers.

The challenge

As a newly formed organisation, the Legal Ombudsman required assurance that its IT systems and associated third party suppliers were in line with CESG standards and complied with Ministry of Justice requirements.

Because the Legal Ombudsman was to handle large amounts of personal data, the information system handling this data had to provide the appropriate levels of security. In addition, the organisation had to comply with the Cabinet Office Security Policy Framework (SPF). In order to reach this outcome, external assistance was required, and Aristi were requested to act as consultants.

The solution

Aristi were selected to provide CLAS support to establish an accredited IT infrastructure. The Aristi CLAS consultant acted as the accreditor and established an accreditation programme that involved a Business Impact Assessment to identify and value the data to be handled.

Support was provided to assess the third parties involved in the delivery of the service to ensure security requirements were met and advice and guidance was given on security policies and procedures, as well as the roles and responsibilities of key staff, such as the Senior Information Risk Owner.

Working with the Legal Ombudsman’s senior IT staff, Aristi ensured that all service providers delivered a solution that met business requirements and successful accreditation was awarded.

Throughout the project, Aristi transferred valuable knowledge to staff, particularly for the role of accreditor, to allow the Legal Ombudsman to manage and maintain an accredited system.

The benefits
  • Aristi were seen to be an independent expert who understood information assurance, because it’s what they do, which gave the Legal Ombudsman confidence that they were in safe hands.
  • Aristi’s knowledge and expertise helped speed up the project delivery, which meant that all project target dates were met without issue.
  • The benefit of knowledge transfer means that staff at the Legal Ombudsman are now becoming experts. The skills transfer means that they are now self-sufficient and can maintain their own accreditation.

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