Los Angeles (CA) – First it was a switch, then it was a router, but it now appears that a single malfunctioning network card was responsible for downing immigration computers at the Los Angeles International Airport over the weekend. US Customs officials told the Los Angeles Times that the rogue network interface cause failed around 12:50 PM on Saturday and began blasting data into the local area network. By 2PM, the extra data caused the entire network responsible for secondary passenger screening to collapse.
Customs initially blamed the computer failure on a break in its external Sprint Nextel lines and waited several hours for a Sprint technician to appear. After three hours, the technician discovered that the problem was actually in the internal network. Customs then switched their story and blamed a faulty switch and then to a failed router, before finally settling on the failed network card.
More than 17,000 passengers were stranded at the airport on Saturday because of the network failure. International passengers who had just arrived were forced to stay on board planes until the system was fixed.