SYTECH, the UK’s longest-established digital forensics consultancy service provider, has reached a new milestone as it celebrates the success of a major international government project in Belize.

Following a competitive tender, the firm was contracted to provide services to the Centre of Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), as part of the Ocean Country Partnership Programme (OCPP). SYTECH worked in collaboration with Cefas to assess the readiness, and support progress towards accreditation to ISO 17025: 2017 for marine pollution testing laboratories in the overseas territory.

ISO 17025 is an international standard that outlines the robust requirements for testing and calibration in laboratories; it sets out guidelines for quality management, technical competence and the ability to produce accurate and reliable test and calibration data.

Having achieved the rigorous accreditation itself, and with significant testing and calibration laboratory experience, SYTECH was enlisted by the government organisation to provide in-country training and gap analysis. Following initial meetings with stakeholders from Cefas, SYTECH worked closely with the Department of Environment (DOE) to obtain a list of key organisations to participate in the project. A combination of fifteen government entities and laboratories participated, including the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA), Belize Bureau of Standards (BBS), Belize Bureau of Standards (BBS), Coastal Zone Management Authority (CZMA) and Ministry of Natural Resources, Petroleum & Mining.


As part of the service, SYTECH fulfilled three requirements across a 12-month period. The firm produced a self-assessment document for the laboratories to undertake an initial assessment of their readiness for ISO 17025 accreditation, and conducted an in-person workshop for key stakeholders including an overview of the standard, steps for implementation and ongoing resources required. To conclude, SYTECH conducted gap analysis visits of laboratories that wanted to further evaluate the option of accreditation through the review of documentation and practices/processes currently in place, along with any further methods deemed appropriate.

Neil Buck, Quality Consultant at SYTECH commented: “ISO 17025 accreditation is recognised worldwide as a global symbol of excellence, enabling organisations to build trust with clients, stakeholders and regulatory bodies, while also ensuring that each facility is up-to-date and compliant with the standards procedures, policies and processes.

“With a wealth of testing and calibration laboratory expertise, we are delighted to have secured the opportunity to impart our knowledge on an international scale with this landmark project in Belize, helping various stakeholders to establish a robust quality management system that meets the stringent requirements of the accreditation. While the process to achieve ISO 17025 can be incredibly challenging, the benefits are worth it, enabling organisations to compete more effectively in their industry, while demonstrating their commitment to quality and accuracy – a powerful differentiator for the business.”

From its offices in Stoke-on-Trent and South Wales, SYTECH provides all aspects of digital forensics and cyber services, consultancy and training. The company maintains a highly experienced, multi-discipline team of Professional Expert Witnesses and Analysts, who each specialise in complementary areas, working to understand the unique cyber security needs of each business.

SYTECH is accredited for ISO 17025 and Forensic Science Code of Practice and Conduct (FSR-C-100), and certified for ISO 27001, ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.