Home Affairs and other government departments hit by ‘unprecedented’ outages

The State Information Technology Agency (SITA) has confirmed that the service delivery of a number of government department’s was affected on Monday 13 August 2018 for 95 minutes, as the SITA network was down from 10h05 – 11h40.

“While services were restored, SITA is deeply concerned by these unprecedented network outages – noting especially that it has happened over the past two working days – when citizens require services from government,” it said.

“The SITA Centurion site is a national key point that houses SITA’s Network Operation Centre, and is at the heart of the government network.

“The engineering report received today indicated that 1hr35 minute outage; is related to the first power outage that happened on Friday: 10 August 2018 in Centurion; due to the Eskom power failure. On Friday, the networks were down during the peak hours from 08h00 to 14h30.”

According to SITA, on Monday morning the Broadband Infraco (BBI) transmission equipment – inside the SITA Centurion Switching Centre which had been running on battery power since the power outage on Friday – was depleted.

It added that SITA engineers are currently investigating why the transmission system failed to switch back to the standard power grid; which would be the standard operating procedure.

“SITA sincerely apologises to all government departments; and citizens for the inconvenience caused during this time. SITA also wants to assure government and the public; that we are determined to comprehensively investigate these two related – but unprecedented incidents – to ensure that government and citizens don’t experience this situation in the future.”

“Given the incident this morning SITA will be approaching the matter differently; and con-currently investigate both incidents as a single occurrence – to get behind the cause of the problem. While the investigation is being done; SITA will immediately work to improve all its incident recovery procedures – and take these two extraordinary incidences – as a new and real learning curve.”

As more information on this matter becomes available SITA said it would update all stakeholders.

“SITA fully recognises that government and the nation must have – and indeed deserve – answers that will give all stakeholders the comfort that the matter is resolved.”

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Home Affairs and other government departments hit by ‘unprecedented’ outages