Oops! Tech error wipes out Alaska info.
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Thread: Oops! Tech error wipes out Alaska info.

  1. #1
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    Oops! Tech error wipes out Alaska info.

    Oops! Tech error wipes out Alaska info
    JUNEAU, Alaska - Perhaps you know that sinking feeling when a single keystroke accidentally destroys hours of work. Now imagine wiping out a disk drive containing information for an account worth $38 billion.
    Oopsie.

    That's what happened to a computer technician reformatting a disk drive at the Alaska Department of Revenue. While doing routine maintenance work, the technician accidentally deleted applicant information for an oil-funded account one of Alaska residents' biggest perks and mistakenly reformatted the backup drive, as well.
    There was still hope, until the department discovered its third line of defense, backup tapes, were unreadable.
    "Nobody panicked, but we instantly went into planning for the worst-case scenario," said Permanent Fund Dividend Division Director Amy Skow. The July computer foul-up, which wiped out dividend distribution information for the fund, would end up costing the department more than $200,000.
    Over the next few days, as the department, the division and consultants from Microsoft Corp. and Dell Inc. labored to retrieve the data, it became obvious the worst-case scenario was at hand.
    Nine months worth of applicant information for the yearly payout from the Alaska Permanent Fund was gone: some 800,000 electronic images that had been painstakingly scanned into the system months earlier, the 2006 paper applications that people had either mailed in or filed over the counter, and supporting documentation such as birth certificates and proof of residence.
    And the only backup was the paperwork itself stored in more than 300 cardboard boxes.
    "We had to bring that paper back to the scanning room, and send it through again, and quality control it, and then you have to have a way to link that paper to that person's file," Skow said.
    Half a dozen seasonal workers came back to assist the regular division staff, and about 70 people working overtime and weekends re-entered all the lost data by the end of August.
    "They were just ready, willing and able to chip in and, in fact, we needed all of them to chip in to get all the paperwork rescanned in a timely manner so that we could meet our obligations to the public," Skow said.
    Last October and November, the department met its obligation to the public. A majority of the estimated 600,000 payments for last year's $1,106.96 individual dividends went out on schedule, including those for 28,000 applicants who were still under review when the computer disaster struck.
    Former Revenue Commissioner Bill Corbus said no one was ever blamed for the incident.
    "Everybody felt very bad about it and we all learned a lesson. There was no witch hunt," Corbus said.
    According to department staff, they now have a proven and regularly tested backup and restore procedure.
    The department is asking lawmakers to approve a supplemental budget request for $220,700 to cover the excess costs incurred during the six-week recovery effort, including about $128,400 in overtime and $71,800 for computer consultants.
    The money would come from the permanent fund earnings, the money earmarked for the dividends. That means recipients could find their next check docked by about 37 cents.
    Link to original story:>Yahoo News Lost Data

    i guess i will be taking backup's of the backup in the future. I would of loved to off been a fly on the wall when that went down..

    cheers
    acidtone..

  2. #2
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Hey Acid~ you know the rules? "deleted" isn't ?

    Also, reformatting doesn't remove the underlying data either?

    And to "accidentally reformat the backup drive" is total bollix................what the hell was he doing reformatting on a production system anyway?

    They must have been using some sort of RAID array?............. haven't they heard of RAID1?????????????? or at least RAID6?

    And the "tapes were unreadable".............. hmmm............ like you don't check the bloody things?..........

    Jeez! I find this as believable as a set of Enron accounts!

    "while doing routine maintenance work"....................errrrr pardon? if he wiped that data he must have used a utility to at least minimal DoD standards...... and you do that "accidentally"........... twice?

    Is it me being paranoid, or does anyone else smell some kind of fraud here?

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    they brought in microshaft to help recover the data ? hahahaha.. that's funny..

    I guess they never heard of EnCase ? the world's best recovery program.. still in use today by all the feds and forensic experts...

  4. #4
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Exactly!

    The whole thing stinks of fraud and cover up to me................ I guess we want our 25% (each!) of those 37 cents (US......not Canadian or Australian)


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    Alright Billy welcome to the team. Can you just go into the server room and do some formatting for me real quick mmmmmmmmmmk?
    meh. -ech0.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Aardpsymon's Avatar
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    yes and feed these backup tapes into the shredder for me. Don't worry about the date on them, they are actually from 1907 not 2007. We have a policy of keeping our backup tapes for 100 years.
    If the world doesn't stop annoying me I will name my kids ";DROP DATABASE;" and get revenge.

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    I guess they only use one backup tape as their "3rd line of defense".
    Why bother being able to restore data from days before yesterday anyway... It's old by now...

  8. #8
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Does the name Oliver North ring a bell?


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    "I'm sorry... I transferred 38 million dollar to my own account and accidentally deleted all data that could prove it, as well as any backups and tapes that could restore the data that could prove it.... Accidents DO happen, ey?"

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