Are you up to speed on the copper network switch off?

There’s a massive switch on the horizon that means many businesses will be facing big changes to the way they stay connected. The ‘big switch off’ entails the UK’s legacy landline infrastructure effectively closing down the old copper network.

On the face of it, this might sound like progress. And in a lot of ways it is. The opportunity is for full digital infrastructure and ultimately reducing the need to dig up roads to replace aging assets, based on technology that hasn’t changed much since the days of Marconi and Edison.

But on the flip side, without taking action to ensure resilience, businesses could be opened up to a whole world of risk. For any mission-critical activity, businesses will need to put in place back-up plans to ensure that they stay connected.

The Government has set a deadline of 2025 for the roll-out to internet-based telecoms, which is an official deadline that still stands. There have been rumours of a delay, but nothing official as of yet.

In the care sector, this is a serious concern, with almost 2m people in the UK relying on some sort of ‘care alarm’. When these use the old ‘copper wire’ infrastructure, the resilience is almost bulletproof. But in switching these devices to internet only, they are at risk of dropping-out from something as seemingly innocuous as a power cut.

And it’s not just personal alarms that rely on the old-school infrastructure. Many of the more mundane functions that are perhaps taken for granted also rely on the old network. Some of the older style security systems, for example, rely on this. Whilst it’s clear that most businesses and consumers now rely on internet-based telephony, it’s not as straightforward as you might think.

So what can businesses do to insure themselves against the potential pitfalls faced here? There are a number of technology-based solutions that exist to help isolate damage. Often a hybrid solution can be achieved that helps mitigate the biggest risks. 24 Seven Cloud has been working with its clients to help ensure business continuity at this time of potential upheaval.