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Tackling Defra’s ageing digital services

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) has one of the largest spending allocations across government for updating its “legacy” services that use old technology or no longer meet business needs. Defra’s problems with legacy services have built up over the years, with most now either no longer supported by the supplier or on extended support arrangements. It has also built new systems on top of old ones – for example to replace EU systems following Brexit – which has added to the challenge.

The study will examine whether Defra has a full understanding of its legacy challenges, including cyber security risks, and if its plans to address the problem are realistic, achievable and aligned to the future needs of the business. It will also explore whether Defra understands the risks to delivering improvements and has a plan for managing these.