Many local, state, and federal government aging legacy data and technology systems, in a need of an upgrade for years, failed the stress test of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In state after state over the last two months during the coronavirus crisis inadequate government staffing dealt with websites crashing and phone systems unable to handle the caller deluge.
Aging Technology Under Pressure
This technology failure hit the newly unemployed especially hard as laid off workers could not get through to their government to apply for benefits:
- In Texas, where nearly 1.3 million lost jobs in a month, the state unemployment phone system was swamped with 1.7 million calls on March 26. Up from a normal average of 13,000 calls per day. One person attempted to call 1,000 times without getting through.
- In Oregon, a computer system more than two decades old mistakenly denied applicants benefits and the phone system kept users on hold for hours and then disconnected them when trying to make contact.
- In New Jersey, the governor put out a call for programmers proficient in their 40-yearr-old system’s COBOL language. This COBOL issue happened in at least 12 states that run the aging language.
- In Florida, the unemployment online system crashed as users were urged to use an out-of-support Internet browser and then told to switch to paper applications.
- On the federal government end, small business owners looking for financial help had trouble using the SBA’s clunky loan processing system, E-Tran.
A lot of these issues could be solved if local, state and federal government embraced dedicated fiber for their solid Internet infrastructure.
On the phone issue alone, consider that a local area network using modern copper lines put in a decade ago can carry about 3,000 phone calls at once while similar fiber optic lines can handle more than 30,000 calls at once.
Legacy Technology Systems are Costlier, Riskier and Less Efficient
The federal government has been trying to address the issue of unproductive technology data and systems with the Government Accountability Office saying in a report last summer:
“As they age, legacy systems can be more costly to maintain, more exposed to cybersecurity risks, and less effective in meeting their intended purpose.”
That same summer the U.S. Coast Guard’s technical issues forced 95 vital systems offline for several days due to a single service malfunction.
In business, just as in government, a solid network infrastructure is a crucial aspect of success. After all, without customer contact, there are no customers. Reliable phone and Internet can be the different between profit and failure.
PS LIGHTWAVE Fiber Network Solutions
Businesses, government, education, healthcare and non-profit organizations in the Greater Houston Metropolitan Area rely on PS LIGHTWAVE and our private 5,500-route miles of fiber network solutions ranging from Ethernet and Internet to VoIP and Dark Fiber.
PS LIGHTWAVE can provide your business a completely new solid network infrastructure based on the latest fiber technology or work with your network’s current infrastructure to leverage its performance.
A great advantage of PS LIGHTWAVE’S fiber option networks is that they are built with 100G capacity, which allows customers scalability as their needs grow, and it allows customers, in events such as COVID-19 and other unexpected events, the ability to burst up to a higher bandwidth capacity.
If you want to learn more about how PS LIGHTWAVE can provide your organization with solutions that best fit your connectivity needs, contact us today.