When the chips go down . . .

Posted on February 12th, by geoff in Caring Times, CT blog. 2 comments

By Caring Times editor GEOFF HODGSON

I have heard people say they couldn’t get by without their smartphone, and I suppose this must be true in that many people depend on them as part of their livelihoods.

But it is a bit scary how dependent we have become on information technology and we should never underestimate how all-pervasive IT can become. (A mayor of Chicago did just that in the late 1800s when he predicted that one day, there would be a telephone in every American town!).

And so on to the role of IT in social care. It’s essential of course, but is there a danger of over-dependency? What happens when systems fall prey to cyber attacks a la ‘Wannacry’? All sorts of prosaic utilities might be compromised – security, fire safety, even gas, electricity and water supplies could go down.

A successful cyber attack (and we are told it is a case of when, not if) could realise all the worst fears we had about the Millennium Bug. There have been news stories of patient deaths in NHS hospitals being attributed to IT failures. Perhaps care home operators should give some thought to the functional resilience of their facilities in a cyber attack scenario – many aspects are forseeable and can be mitigated; not to have some sort of plan in place could be seen as negligence.

  • The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.

2 responses to “When the chips go down . . .”

  1. My genealogy hobby uncovered an 5th generation uncle who joined the Royal Marines at 17yrs in 1793 and later moved into the 40th Foot Regiment until 1825 and fought on sea and land the Med, Atlantic and the Caribbean; in the Napoleonic Peninsular wars and in Washington, the West Indies and New Orleans. Having retired to light labouring in Somerset, he finally became a fully retired Chelsea Pensioner at 98 yrs and died a contented man aged 100yrs in 1875… without the benefit of IT at all!

  2. geoff says:

    Wow! For a genealogy enthusiast, a discovery like that must be pure gold.

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