CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

Tech Industry

Report: Y2K fix disrupts U.S. spy satellites for days, not hours

A computer patch intended to avert Y2K glitches reportedly turns the flow of data from five spy satellites into indecipherable garble for nearly three days.

    The Year 2000 computer problem may have hit a collection of U.S. image-collecting spy satellites a lot harder than first thought, according to a report.

    The family of satellites was affected by the Y2K glitch for nearly three days, a failure far more substantial than the Pentagon's earlier reports of just a few hours, The Chicago Tribune reported today, based on interviews with what it terms "knowledgeable" government officials.

    Back to Year 2000 Index Page A computer patch intended to avert Y2K glitches turned the flow of data from five spy satellites into indecipherable garble. Within a few hours, Pentagon technicians redirected the satellite signals and began the slow process of manually deciphering the signals, according to the report.

    The three-day shutdown occurred at a time when the entire U.S. intelligence community was on global alert for potential terrorist activity relating to Year 2000 celebrations, the report states.

    "The outage diminished capacity for a while... a couple of days, but back up procedures were put in place almost immediately," said Susan Hansen, a Pentagon spokesperson. The Pentagon briefed reporters on the situation a day after it occured.