Thursday, July 09, 2015
The failure of two major networks yesterday points to the fragility of the digital economy. Although there was no evidence of hacking, it is uncomfortable to know that a broken switch or burned-out router or other malfunction can bring down both a stock exchange and a separate airline booking network at the same time. What is worrisome is the two systems are not related. What kind of fail-safe backup systems do the two networks have? What are the elements that went down and what is needed to make them secure in the future? Uptime is the hallmark of network credibility. These are systems that have to work 24x7x365. They can't afford an occasional crash. The CIOs of United Airlines and the NYSE are facing hard questioning and well they should. Their reputations and the credibility of their networks are at stake.