Feeds

UK govt IT an 'appalling waste' of public money

EDS in the firing line. Again

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Application security programs and practises

An all-party committee of MPs yesterday attacked the government's record on public sector IT projects, and said Whitehall was hiding "an appalling waste" of public money behind a "cloak of commercial confidentiality".

The work and pensions committee was especially critical of the Child Support Agency's (CSA) telephone and computer system, which it described as "over spec, over-budget and over due". It called for a thorough analysis of the installation of the system, so that the same mistakes would not be made again.

EDS, the company responsible for the CSA system, has been at the heart of several high-profile government computer contracts, and the resulting publicity has rarely been good. In April, it was revealed that staff at the agency had resorted to using pocket calculators to work out what payments were due, because the system had failed so comprehensively.

A spokesman for the company denied the project was over budget, although The Guardian reports that costs have risen from £400m to £456m.

Committee chairman Liberal Democrat MP Sir Archy Kirkwood, said that there is a desperate need for greater transparency. "Government has produced a mountain of guidance to encourage successful IT projects but there's no way for parliament or the public to know whether it's being followed - until the IT fails and then it's too late," he said.

We have not yet been able to speak to Mr. Kirkwood about his report as he has been busy with constituency work. Watch this space for more information. ®

Related stories

EDS wins $1.1bn gig with BoA
NHS squares EDS over nixed email deal
UK gov holds EDS to account over crap CSA system

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.