Problem

Vulnerability of telephone system

Other Names:
Undependable telephone service
Lack of back-up telephone apparatus
Nature:
Telephone companies are investing heavily in advanced computer systems to manage their networks. In general this lowers costs and makes calls connect more quickly, and permits a greater variety of voice and data services. However it also increases the degree of central control such that any failure, even at a local level, can have unforeseen widespread effects.
Incidence:
In 1990 in the USA a small computer error at an exchange in New Jersey led to a major failure of a continent-wide telephone network over a period of 9 hours, during which 50% of the long-distance calls could not be made.
Narrower Problems:
Dysfunctional public telephones
Problem Type:
E: Emanations of other problems
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 1: No PovertyGOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and InfrastructureGOAL 10: Reduced InequalityGOAL 12: Responsible Consumption and Production
Date of last update
01.01.2000 – 00:00 CET