UPDATE - London Stock Exchange Takes Safety Steps

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Security ; Steve Ranger, Computing [30 May 2000]

London Stock Exchange takes safety steps

The London Stock Exchange is tightening its systems management and data quality controls to prevent a repetition of the system failure which closed the market for almost a day in April.

The exchange is implementing new software management safeguards such as increased monitoring and assessment of system performance.

The market was closed for nearly eight hours after an overnight batch process failed to finish, leaving the exchange with corrupted share price data.

Exchange chairman Don Cruickshank this week told a House of Commons Treasury Committee the availability of back-up hardware systems was not an issue, because the failure was caused by data corruption and software faults.

The exchange also told the committee that steps had been taken to reduce the chance of a repetition, and contingency arrangements are being reviewed.

The measures follow recommendations arising from an investigation by Ernst & Young.

An exchange spokesman said Andersen Consulting is continuing to run the system and will perform upgrades. When the proposed merger with the Deutsche Boerse takes place, the system will be replaced with the German Xetra system, also developed by Andersen. "Until the transition, we will continue to provide a market with a high level of reliability," said the spokesman.

The exchange refused to comment as to whether it will seek compensation from Andersen Consulting.

First appeared in Computing

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