We always hear about issues with systems, applications, or services caused by poor code quality or missed defects, but what happens when these problems become life threatening? Recently an article posted by npr discussed the early release of dangerous prisoners who are now being charged for murder. According to the article, Governor Jay Inslee of Washington State reported that more than 3,200 prisoners were released early due to a software defect.
This was not a result of good behavior, but rather an issue caused by a software glitch within the Department of Corrections. As reported by the governor’s general counsel, Nick Brown, approximately 3% of the occurrences since 2002 should not have been allowed. This software glitch has gone unnoticed for more than 10 years and as a result dangerous criminals have made their way back into society.
Software risks to the business, specifically Application Resiliency, headline a recent executive roundtable hosted by CAST and sponsored by IBM Italy, ZeroUno and the Boston Consulting Group. European IT executives from the financial services industry assembled to debate the importance of mitigating software risks to their business.
If you’ve read the news lately, you’ve seen headline after headline (some, even on our blog) about computer glitches, technical failures, software risk, and hacks. The health of applications is now under more microscopic attention than ever before – because no matter whether internal or external causes prompt a software outage, the security and stability of your applications are paramount.
We’re sure that by now, you’ve seen all of the stories about last week’s computer turmoil at the New York Stock Exchange, United Airlines, the Wall Street Journal, and TD Ameritrade. And as a top-level executive you’ve probably launched an internal review, or at least asked yourself, “Could it happen here?”
The simple answer is, unfortunately, “yes, it most definitely could.”
The events of last Wednesday proved that things often do come in threes. The “rule of three” reared its ugly head, as technical failures occurred at three large American organizations: the New York Stock Exchange, United Airlines, and The Wall Street Journal. United Airlines grounded all flights nationwide, wasn’t able to conduct background checks of passengers, and left flight attendants handwriting tickets (many of which were not accepted by TSA agents). Then, the NYSE suspended trading for almost four hours, the first time in a decade that trading was halted during regular business hours. The Wall Street Journal’s homepage also faced difficulties and was offline for almost an hour.
Digital transformation is a project many business executive leaders have recently taken on, especially those in banking and financial services. These organizations are competing to digitally transform front-end systems that are connected to brittle legacy systems. The subsequent failure to identify the structural vulnerabilities in combined applications, produces security and reliability issues the negate the value of digital transformation.
Most IT organizations wouldn’t consider the software risk in their application portfolio a brand issue; that is, until they experience a tragedy or crisis such as application failure and customers start to worry. Most of the time IT organizations are able to calculate the cost to fix the problem and how it will affect their overall business. However, what often isn’t taken into account is the long term effects on their brand and business going forward. Continue reading →