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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-16776: Mark Griffin (Central Scotland)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 18 May 2018

To ask the Scottish Government whether it has asked the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) for an incident report relating to its reported IT failure on 26 March 2018 and any impact that this may have had on people in Scotland, and whether the Scottish Government's reuse of DWP payment and customer information systems could be affected by this failure.

Answered by: Jeane Freeman 5 June 2018

The Scottish Government is focussed solely on delivery of safe and secure payments to Scottish citizens when we take responsibility for payments of Carers Allowance Supplement via our existing system, Scottish Government Enterprise Accounting System (SEAS), in Autumn 2018 and re-use of DWP’s Central Payment System (CPS) for Best Start Grant payments in Summer 2019.

The incident on 26 March 2018 involved staff access issues with CPS within a specific Datacentre however full service was restored within the same working day. Consequently no payments were delayed as a result of the incident contrary to initial reports that suggested less than 250 British people living overseas may have had a payment delay of one day.

Given the limited scale of the issue and that the Scottish Government are not currently using the CPS, the Scottish Government did not request to be involved in the incident closure process. The CPS is a highly resilient system. However to ensure citizens are not impacted by any potential outage once CPS makes payments for the Scottish Government. We are working with the DWP to agree joint incident management processes, service continuity arrangements and sight of the forward schedule of change to ensure payments are made on time.