US govt can finally stop Y2K paperwork - 17 years later

  • 16/06/2017
y2k bug technology internet 2000
There were fears across the world computers would break down. Photo credit: Getty

Y2K may have been the biggest technological threat of the turn of the century, but now 17 years later US government agencies will finally be able to stop preparing for it.

The Trump administration has announced it will end dozens of paperwork requirements for a number of agencies, including reporting on preparedness for the IT glitch which was much-publicised, but never eventuated.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) order rescinds seven requirements relating to the Y2K bug, which the government says are "now obsolete and outdated" because federal agencies were unaffected by it.

They're part of a wider move to get rid of regulations - a major policy pledge by President Donald Trump.

The directive also ends an obligation to file a report every time a small business vendor is paid - a task estimated to take up 1200 work hours a year.

It also stops reporting of costs related to the disastrous BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill because the related court case has been settled.

"We're looking for stuff everyone agrees is a complete waste of time," OMB director Mick Mulvaney says.

The Y2K paperwork changes won't actually mean a lot in practical terms, with OMB senior advisor Linda Springer saying those requirements are often ignored anyway, Bloomberg reports.

In total, more than 50 paperwork requirements have been cut.