United Kingdom almost lost 16000 coronavirus cases due to Excel spreadsheet error. In this coronavirus pandemic it is an UK’s big mistake. Exactly 15,841 COVID-19 cases that were accounted for between 25 September and 2 October have not been arranged on the administration dashboard. Due to this error they have failed those cases to register into the national track record and trace system. The Excel sheet evidently reached its maximal file size and unable to update.
The error was caused when Public Health England (PHE) collects data from multiple sources including government and private labs and then those CSV files by loading them into an Excel spreadsheet. The Microsoft Excel spreadsheet software has limits 65,536 rows in older versions and 1,048,576 rows in more recent versions. It is not clear that which version of Microsoft Excel Public Health England (PHE) is used.
A spokesperson said that, “Initial findings indicate that the issue was caused by the fact that some files containing positive test results exceeded their maximum file size, and they then failed to load into the central system because they couldn’t get through”.
UK’s PM Boris Johnson said that, “Some of the data, it got truncated and it was lost”. He also added that, “Public Health England (PHE) had contacted all those who had tested positive and that attempts to trace their contacts were ongoing. But many researchers are worried that it may be too late. The administration’s scientific advisors suggest that the contacts of individuals who test positive for the infection are found and advised to self-isolate within 48 hours “.
James Kawak said that, “Its absolutely impossible to follow where your information originates from, there’s no review trail (so you can overtype numbers and not know it), and there’s no simple method to test spreadsheets, first of all. The most serious issue is that anybody can make an Excel spreadsheet – gravely. Since it’s so natural to utilize, the formation of even significant spreadsheets isn’t confined to individuals who get programming and do it in a precise, very much recorded way”.
The unreported cases were added to the government’s daily new infection count over the weekend.