National Post (Latest Edition)

Poor IT support hurting Canadian military operations, internal review finds

- Lee Berthiaume

OTTAWA • An internal Defence Department report has warned that Canadian Armed Forces operations and security may be at risk due to major problems with how the military’s computer networks are built and supported.

The report follows a review of the Defence Department’s informatio­n management and technology systems, described as “critical” to the success of Canadian military operations and training.

The brunt of the report’s criticism is directed at the technical support provided to the military by another federal entity, Shared Services Canada. Nearly all defence and military officials who participat­ed in the review were upset by the amount of time it took Shared Services to respond to requests for help, according to the report. In some instances, those delays harmed operations.

The report cited one instance in which an email server that went down during an unspecifie­d domestic mission couldn’t be fixed right away because it was a weekend and Shared Services did not have staff on call.

Defence Department spokesman Daniel Le Bouthillie­r Monday described the review as a “valuable tool” for improving IT support even as he defended the department’s relationsh­ip with Shared Services Canada.

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