By Claire West

With the London Olympics quickly approaching, there are a couple of areas that businesses need to be aware of in terms of their networks — and particularly with their internet connectivity. This isn’t meant as a scare tactic; businesses just need to take more notice of their connectivity in general, especially as the internet has now become the main artery of most organisations.

UK wide demand for bandwidth

The ability to stream live video is likely to be very popular during the Olympics, which means that UK ISPs will see very high peaks in demand during the most popular games. Most ISPs should be providing additional capacity to cope with this extra traffic, however, there are still likely to be some reductions in network availability, which could have an effect on core network services, particularly for those on Ethernet services, such as EFM and ADSL.

In preparation for this heightened demand, it’s likely that many ISPs have already bolstered their infrastructure with additional bandwidth, and have prioritised high-value services such as VOIP and thin-client traffic. However, UK businesses should still speak to their ISP to double-check their capacity during this time.

Installation and Fault Resolution

Transport for London (TfL) has set up The ClearWay 2012 initiative, which restricts utility companies digging on the Olympic Route Network. As a result, certain new services and repair work cannot be undertaken between the 1st July and 9th September 2012. In effect, this means that there are likely to be delays to new installations, upgrades and repair jobs in and around London.

“UK businesses need to be aware of all of these issues, even if they already have contingency in place to allow for bandwidth reductions and the risk of an outage,” says Robert Rutherford, managing director at QuoStar.

“Obviously, all of these risks have the potential to affect any business at any time, but UK companies should use the London Olympics as an opportunity to assess their network resilience in general, and to take action as necessary.”