NSA puts system back online

NSA puts system back online

National Security Agency officials worked feverishly to restore an intelligence infrastructure system that went down on Jan. 24.

NSA spent about $1.5 million and thousands of staff hours to rebuild the system in 72 hours, according to an agency statement.

The computer outage at the agency's headquarters at Fort Meade, Md., 'did not affect intelligence collection but did affect the processing of intelligence information,' according to the statement.

'We do have contingency plans' to provide data for daily presidential briefings and other purposes, NSA spokeswoman Marti Mercer said. The problem wasn't a virus or year 2000-related, she said.

It was the second intelligence systems failure in a month. During the year 2000 rollover, ground-based systems that the National Reconnaissance Office uses to download intelligence data from satellites failed for three hours because of a date code problem [GCN, Jan. 24, Page 6].

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