Fedwire Briefs

AT&T files for lower FTS 2000 prices

Officials at AT&T Government Markets said they sent a proposal April 2 to the General Services Administration to cut the prices on AT&T's FTS 2000 long-

distance telecommunications network. John Doherty, AT&T's vice president of FTS 2000 and civilian markets, said the proposal would cut prices, effective May 1, to the levels of those proposed by Sprint and MCI WorldCom during the first year of the FTS 2001 program.

GSA recently awarded FTS 2001 telecommunications contracts to Sprint and MCI WorldCom, promising that new contracts would save billions of dollars compared with the current FTS 2000 contracts held by AT&T and Sprint. Prices for an average phone call during the first year of FTS 2001 would start at about 5.5 cents per minute, according to GSA.

A Sprint spokesman refused to comment on whether his company also would lower prices on its FTS 2000 contract.

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Key systems miss Y2K deadline

Although the majority of the federal government's mission-critical systems are Year 2000-compliant, three congressmen warn that the government's most vital operation systems - including those in the Defense Department, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services - remain vulnerable to the Year 2000 computer problem.

The warnings, from senators Robert Bennett (R-Utah) and Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and Rep. Stephen Horn (R-Calif.), follow the Clinton administration's announcement last week that 92 percent of its 6,123 mission-critical systems were fixed by its self-imposed March 31 deadline.

WEB EXTRA: For the full story, go to www.fcw.com/extra.

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IG criticizes HUD Y2K effort

Critical systems at the Department of Housing and Urban Development are still vulnerable to Year 2000 failures because of weaknesses in the standards test and insufficient authority at the project office, according to a HUD inspector general report issued last month.

The report points out that the agency's chief information officer has no direct authority over the HUD Office of Information Technology and the contractors performing the work, despite a recommendation from the OIG to place the Office of Information Technology under the CIO.

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HCFA sets up Y2K hot line

The Health Care Financing Administration has launched a new toll-free telephone line to help doctors, hospitals, laboratories and health care providers avoid life-threatening interruptions caused by the Year 2000 computer problem.

Callers will be able to get answers to questions that relate to medical equipment and supplies, facilities and even billing operations. HCFA has mailed more than a million letters to health care providers informing them about the toll-free line, which is (800) 958-4232.

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IBM to revamp OPM system

The Office of Personnel Management last week awarded a contract to IBM Global Government Industry for the modernization of the OPM Federal Employees Retirement System and the Civil Service Retirement System. The contract, for $29.8 million, is for one year with four one-year options.

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INS awards Stars task orders

The Immigration and Naturalization Service last week awarded Electronic Data Systems Corp. and Computer Sciences Corp. the first task orders through its Service Technology Alliance Resources program.

EDS received a task order to oversee operations, maintenance and some development of the agency's information management systems.

Under its task order, CSC will oversee systems for law enforcement functions.

WEB EXTRA: For the full story, go to www.fcw.com/extra.

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Serbs launch cyberattack

Unidentified Serbian computer hackers last week successfully froze up the main World Wide Web server supporting the public affairs apparatus of the United States-led NATO operation in Kosovo.

The attack, launched against the NATO headquarters Web server in Brussels, Belgium, included an e-mail attack from the Yugoslavian capital, Belgrade, that clogged NATO's e-mail server with 2,000 messages a day. An official with NATO's Integrated Data Service, which provides public information on the NATO operation over the Internet, late last week said the attacks were ongoing but added that NATO was beginning to get control of the situation.

WEB EXTRA: For the full story, see www.fcw.com/extra.

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