Acona Ltd has been asked by Experian to undertake an independent review of its 2008 Corporate Responsibility Report and provide assurance that:
- Quantitative data is materially accurate and are supported by robust data collection systems and processes
- Qualitative statements can be supported by evidence and properly represent activity across the Group.
Responsibilities of Experian Group and Acona Ltd
The information and statements contained within the report are the responsibility of Experian. This statement is the responsibility of Acona Ltd and represents our independent opinion of the content of the report.
The review covered operations in the UK, US, France and Serasa (Brazil) for the period described in the report. Other operations were excluded from this review. Information subject to verification by other third parties - such as financial data included within the Annual Report and Accounts and Serasa’s independent CR Reporting - was outside our scope. However, we have relied on it in forming our conclusions.
This review was undertaken during May and June 2008.
In performing our work we adopted the following approach:
- Desk-top evaluation and detailed analysis of the raw data used to construct the report, including comparisons with previous years
- Review of internal and external documents relating to CR management, including policies, procedures and stakeholder comments, particularly ensuring that evidence was made available to support substantive comments and claims made in this report
- Detailed telephone interviews with staff involved in compiling the report to test the accuracy of the data and underlying processes
The data and inferences drawn from them, and substantive statements are materially accurate and supported by a range of evidence from internal and external sources.
Inaccuracies identified during the verification process were rectified and the report was amended accordingly. In most instances these were relatively minor, generally confined to errors in collation and data handling. Where this was not the case, recommendation was made to remove the relevant information from the report or to provide additional clarification within the body of the text.
It is our opinion that the report succeeds in presenting an accurate picture of CR activity in Experian Group.
Acona Ltd is an independent consultancy, based in London but with staff all over the UK. We have broad expertise and advise large, mainly corporate, clients on the full range of social, environmental and ethical matters. All of our team has extensive experience in the field and biographical information can be found on our website - www.acona.com/cr
Acona has provided consultancy support to Experian Group during the year under review. This support included advice on strategy, disclosure and assistance with the implementation of projects. Acona is independent from Experian Group, and is impartial from the organisation's major stakeholders. This review was undertaken by members of our team who do not work with Experian in any other capacity.
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