Koskinen on Y2K Reality

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Gary North posted the following today. Interesting is that Mr. K makes no mention of refinery, pipeline, power plant, transportation/shipping or international Y2K impacts.

The plots thickens. Admit some impacts to take the focus off of others????


Koskinen on Y2K's Reality Link: http://www.usia.gov/cgi-bin/washfile/display.pl?p=/prod... Comment: This is from the United States Information Agency (USIA), Department of State (Jan. 10).

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The President's Council on Year 2000 Conversion says minor Y2K glitches continue to be reported across the country, ranging from difficulties in processing motor vehicle registrations to problems related to school building operations.

In a press release issued January 7, the council described several domestic Y2K-related incidents that have occurred since January 3 -- the date of the last press briefing held at the council's Information Coordination Center.

"The fact that there continue to be date change glitches reminds us that the Y2K challenge was very real," said Council Chair John Koskinen.

The Y2K-related problems cited by the council included, among others:

-- On January 3, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago reported a Y2K glitch in transferring about $700,000 in tax payments from customers of 60 financial institutions in the region -- out of a total of $15,000 million processed nationwide that day. The problem was repaired and the affected payments were posted the next day.

-- On January 6, the Food and Drug Administration had received 24 reports regarding possible Y2K problems with medical devices. None of the devices were determined to represent a safety issue.

-- The State of Indiana discovered a minor Y2K glitch in its system for renewing driver's licenses, with some patrons receiving licenses that were good for five years, even though Indiana law only allows renewals for four years.

Following is the text of the press release:

(begin text) Press Release

January 7, 2000


Roughly one week after the Year 2000 rollover, overall key infrastructure systems in the United States are operating normally, but minor Y2K glitches continue to be reported by a number of businesses and government agencies across the country, according to the President's Council on Year 2000 Conversion.

The Council today issued a compilation of domestic Y2K-related incident reports that have been made to its Information Coordination Center (ICC) since Council Chair John Koskinen held his last press briefing on January 3. The glitches have ranged from difficulties in processing motor vehicle registrations to issues related to school building operations systems.

"The fact that there continue to be date change glitches reminds us that the Y2K challenge was very real," said Koskinen. "The hard work of thousands of dedicated employees in the public and private sectors is the reason why what we have seen thus far are minor difficulties and not serious national problems."

After close of business today, the ICC will further scale back its monitoring operations. A core staff of approximately 30 individuals will receive reports of Y2K-related difficulties on an exception-only basis through the end of January.

"We are truly gratified by the level of participation from government agencies and industry groups that provided data to the ICC," said Koskinen. "I am hopeful that our experience in collecting information about Y2K issues will serve as a model for dealing with future technological challenges."

Y2K-Related Incident Reports (since 2200 GMT on January 3, 2000)


The Department of Education surveyed 51 elementary/secondary school districts. The following Y2K-related issues were reported: One district reported that one of 35 water heaters had to be turned on manually; one district reported that three workstations displayed incorrect dates; one district reported a problem with student services involving a very old computer. The district had back-up systems in place, so the problem did not cause any disruption of service.

The Department of Education also surveyed 51 post-secondary institutions. The following Y2K-related issue was reported: One university reported that a computer displayed incorrect dates but stated that the affected programs were quickly patched/corrected.

Federal Operations

Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Three mission-critical systems at the Federal Housing Administration experienced minor Y2K-related problems late in the day on January 3. All three systems have been repaired, re-tested, and released to production.

The FHA reported two of its systems -- the EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) and the CSMS (Comprehensive Servicing and Monitoring System) -- that manage administrative reports experienced Y2K glitches that caused incorrect dates to appear on reports. However, the content of the reports was not affected in any way. The third system, the SFIS (Single Family Insurance System), experienced a Y2K error that prevented users from terminating FDHA mortgages. Operations were not significantly affected.

An additional Y2K-related glitch was reported to have affected the Single Family Premium Collections System (SFPCS). A previous fix to correct file expiration dates to conform with the new 4-digit year format created permanent files that the existing utility could not delete. The problem was fixed upon discovery.

Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Tenant Rental Assistance Certification System experienced a Y2K glitch in testing over the weekend. The start date field automatically proposed a date of "01/01/1900" when the date field should have been populated with "01/01/2000." As of Friday, January 7, the system had been repaired, re-tested and released to production.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Prior to the date rollover, engineers at the NOAA web site location realized that the database product used to support river gauge data was not Y2K compliant. A new, Y2K-compliant database was installed over the weekend, and the function was activated at 1400 PST on Monday, January 3. The web site was never down. Only the function displaying river gauge information was temporarily disabled.

Financial Sector

On January 3, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago reported a Y2K glitch in transferring about $700,000 in tax payments from customers of 60 financial institutions in the region, out of $15 billion processed nationwide that day. It was repaired that night and the affected payments were posted the next day.

Bank credit card companies reported to financial regulators on Thursday, January 6, that they have identified and are taking steps to correct a potential Y2K-glitch involving some credit card transactions. According to the industry, merchants that did not make use of free upgrades provided during 1999 for a software package manufactured by CyberCash, Inc. could experience a "back-office" glitch that produces duplicate postings of charges made after January 1. The problem affects primarily smaller retailers -- most major retailers use their own software. Credit card companies normally monitor postings for evidence of double charges and reconcile them with affected merchants before items are posted on cardholder accounts. According to the industry, credit card companies typically see 2,000 to 3,000 duplicates out of 100 million transactions a day.

A Y2K computer glitch discovered late Monday, January 3, at a Chicago-area bank temporarily interrupted electronic Medicare payments to some hospitals and other health care providers. As a work around, Medicare contractors -- private insurance companies that process and pay Medicare claims -- sent diskettes containing processed claims to the bank by courier or Federal Express so that the payments could be made in a timely manner. As of Thursday, January 6, the affected system was reported fixed.

Health Care

As of close of business on Thursday, January 6, the FDA had received 24 reports regarding possible Y2K problems with medical devices, only five of which were direct reports to the FDA. Two reports were determined to be false. Four reports were determined not to be Y2K-related. The remaining 18 reports on medical device problems related to Y2K were followed up by the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health. Five of these devices were known to be non-compliant by the FDA. None of the 18 identified were determined to be a safety issue either because the problem did not affect the functionality of the device (it was a date display or printed date issue only) or a manual reset or date reset option was available.

State, Local and Tribal Government

The U.S. Virgin Islands reported a Y2K-related software problem in the Motor Vehicle Bureau that affected the registration of automobiles and forced the temporary closure of the St. Croix Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office (there is one DMV office each on the islands of St. John, St. Thomas, and St. Croix). The problem was identified on Monday, January 3, the first workday after the holiday. It was repaired on Tuesday, January 4.

The State of Indiana discovered a minor Y2K-related glitch in its system for renewing driver's licenses. Some patrons early in the week received licenses that were good for five years; Indiana law only allows renewals for four years. The problem was corrected on the evening of Wednesday, January 5. Individuals who received the five-year licenses will receive notices from the State requesting that they come back in for a new license.

Florida and Kentucky unemployment insurance benefit systems encountered a Y2K glitch in an automated telephone call processing system. The Y2K glitch in custom code prevented some claimants from claiming earned income for the week ending 01/01/2000. While ten States use the system (ME, VT, MD, FL, KY, SC, LA, OK, UT, WA), only Florida and Kentucky experienced the glitch. Claimants reporting the problem were provided an alternative means for filing their claims according to State contingency plans. A software-based patch was distributed, enabling the resumption of automated earned income processing.

On January 3, the State of Nevada reported minor Y2K-related coding glitches for systems tied to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Child Welfare programs. The TANF glitch only affected people with birth dates in the Year 1990. The problem was corrected within hours and services were not impacted. For Child Welfare, the previous month's payment register field was not updating correctly. The State reported that this problem was also corrected quickly and services were not affected.

One of Florida's State University System Regional Data Centers reported on Thursday, January 6, a problem with its Computer Associate Tape Management System. In on-line access to the system (MVS and OS-390 users), methods to note a tape as "permanent" using the convention of "1999/365," will not work in January 2000. Consequently, when the nightly batch scratch list is created, data sets whose retention date was updated on-line to "1999/365" are deleted from the Tape Management System inventory and the volume placed into the scratch pool. The North West Regional Data Center is evaluating the impact of the problem.

The Navajo Nation Law Enforcement Office on Monday, January 3, reported that seven of eight law enforcement servers had failed. Manual processes were subsequently put into place. The servers contain law enforcement records including automated forms. Repairs were scheduled to be complete by close of business on Thursday, January 6. The problem has not affected 911 or police dispatch capabilities.

The President's Council on Year 2000 Conversion, established on February 4, 1998 by Executive Order 13073, is responsible for coordinating the Federal Government's efforts to address the Year 2000 problem. The Council's more than 30 member agencies have worked to promote action on the problem and to offer support to public and private sector organizations within their policy areas. Visit the Council via the Internet at www.y2k.gov. For consumer information on the Year 2000 problem, call the Council's free information line at 1-888-USA-4-Y2K (1-888-872-4925).

(end text)

(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State)

Link: http://www.usia.gov/cgi-bin/washfile/display.pl?p=/prod...

-- Bill P (porterwn@one.net), January 13, 2000



-- I'm Here, I'm There (I'm Everywhere@so.beware), January 13, 2000.

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