A report on The Register has found a job vacancy on the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) website which seems to suggest that the organisation’s entire cultural events database is stored on a simple Excel spreadsheet.
The job description states:
“The majority of the Team and Database Administrators work will be to work with the Senior Operations Manager, and Business Manager, in management of the central cultural events database (held in excel)”
Any large-scale projects which involve computers and governmental organisations inevitably seem to end up in disaster in the United Kingdom, after well known problems with schemes such as the NHS database being a prime example.
After being questioned on the matter, LOCOG released the following statement:
“The document you're asking about is just a simple list of information relating to events, it's a tracking tool not a database. ExCel [sic] spreadsheets are a common corporate tool and we use them as and when appropriate.”
“Where data is of a more sensitive nature then we impose stronger security measures and platforms according to the risk profile. Information security is of the up most importance to LOCOG and we are confident that our data is held securely with the stringent security procedures we have in place.”
If there is any truth to this story; it is a catastrophe waiting to happen. This much data, some of it very sensitive, stored on a simple spreadsheet, could potentially be hacked or stolen leading to a massive data loss.
For the extended story, click here