Bell Atlantic Working Toward July 1999 Target for Y2K Readiness

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Bell Atlantic Working Toward July 1999 Target for Y2K Readiness

Company Urges Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
to Check Their Communications Systems, Equipment

October 21, 1998

Media
contact:

Jim Smith,
973 649-8850

John Johnson,
617 743-3677

NEW YORK -- Jan. 1, 2000 should be "just another day on the network,"
according to Bell Atlantic specialists working to eliminate the so-called
"millennium bug" from the company's network and computer support
systems.

But the company is urging businesses to check directly with the vendors
who supply their computer and telecommunications hardware and
software to make sure they, too, are ready for the millennium change.

"Business-as-usual for carriers' networks will be a hollow victory if the
businesses that need to use network services can't because their own
equipment has failed," said Mark Kutner, president of Bell Atlantic's
General Business Services group. "Y2K is an issue that needs their
attention."

When it comes to communications, Bell Atlantic suggests that a thorough
inventory and assessment be made of all customer owned or leased
equipment which accesses or receives network services from Bell Atlantic
or other telecommunications carriers, known as customer premises
equipment or CPE. CPE includes, among other items, ISDN telephone
sets, PBXs, multiplexers, channel service units, routers, bridges, modems
and associated software and firmware.

In some instances, a year 2000 problem with CPE can interfere with the
ability to access or receive network services.

For this reason, Bell Atlantic is urging all of its customers to include CPE
in their inventory and assessment efforts and to follow through with all
appropriate remediation, replacement and testing activities. This includes
contacting the CPE equipment manufacturer, vendor or maintenance
service provider for additional information.

Bell Atlantic intends to post additional information regarding CPE issues
from time to time on its year 2000 Web site,
www.bellatlantic.com/year2000.

More than three years ago, Bell Atlantic began working on the year 2000
problem, attributed to early computer programmers who allocated only
two digits to denote the year. As a result, many automated systems will
need adjustments to be able to differentiate Jan. 1, 2000 from Jan. 1, 1900.
A computer processing a life insurance claim, for example, could
determine that a policyholder had died before being born.

Most of the company's systems affecting customer service will be ready
for the year 2000 date transition by the end of 1998. The company's goal
is to have its network and all other mission-critical systems compliant by
June 30, 1999.

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and
information industry. With more than 42 million telephone access lines
and eight million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic companies
are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data services, market
leaders in wireless services and the world's largest publishers of directory
information. Bell Atlantic companies are also among the world's largest
investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations
and investments in 23 countries.

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