On the 25th of October, from 11:20 A.M., wired and wireless Internet failures occurred for 89 minutes. As usual, I was going to send the class materials I had prepared to my e-mail before going to a part-time job at the academy. Then a warning popped up on the laptop saying that it could not connect to the Internet. I thought it happened because the Wi-Fi was unstable. However, as the status kept same after turning the laptop off and on again, I noticed something was strange. It was impossible to re-adjust the Wi-Fi router, moreover, phone did not answer, making me more embarrassed. I could not think of any other way because the Internet I always used did not work.
According to KT (Korea Telecome)’s case summary announced later, a routing (network path setting) error occurred while replacing the server. KT is always trying to prevent errors by using a test bed and limiting the number of information transfers, and so on, not to lead to nationwide failure. However, the work that should be done at night was performed during the day in the absence of KT staff, and incorrect routing information was found at the edge. It spread to all over the country through the network, causing an Internet failure. Eventually, I think the problem occurred because of a careless attitude and the test bed not being applied to all networks. As KT is one of the leading telecommunication companies in Korea, there are many users, and without the Internet, it is impossible to do almost anything. The result of this complacency attitude led loss to many people.
There was no major damage to me, but my friend was unable to submit the answers during the exam because the Internet was not available. Fortunately, the professor did not take the test again and received the answer even if it was late. However, I cannot imagine how upset he must have been while the Internet was not working. In addition, according to the result of the “KT Outage Damage Survey,” many small and medium-sized merchants and self-employed businesses suffered a significant decline in sales.
KT’s measures to prevent recurrence were even more disappointing. The existing simulation system will be expanded (virtualized test bed) to completely block failures caused by human error, and the test bed previously applied only in the work preparation stage will be finally tested right before applying new routing in each region of the country. I wonder why they had not done this before. Because the Internet is important today, they should have prepared for mistakes or attacks through thorough error-prevention measures to the extent in advance.
Through this incident, many people seem to have realized that the Internet occupies a large part of our lives and that they were taking it for granted. Even though it was a short time, I experienced how our daily life and work can be paralyzed without the Internet. As such, Korea has developed a lot in technology, and it seems that our daily life is greatly influenced by it. Companies should recognize their huge responsibility and implement thorough accident prevention measures and build systematic response manuals.
Lee Su-yeon firstname.lastname@example.org
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