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Oracle Businesses Government Medicine The Almighty Buck The Courts

Oregon Sues Oracle For "Abysmal" Healthcare Website 212

SpzToid (869795) writes The state of Oregon sued Oracle America Inc. and six of its top executives Friday, accusing the software giant of fraud for failing to deliver a working website for the Affordable Care Act program. The 126-page lawsuit claims Oracle has committed fraud, lies, and "a pattern of activity that has cost the State and Cover Oregon hundreds of millions of dollars". "Not only were Oracle's claims lies, Oracle's work was abysmal", the lawsuit said. Oregon paid Oracle about $240.3 million for a system that never worked, the suit said. "Today's lawsuit clearly explains how egregiously Oracle has disserved Oregonians and our state agencies", said Oregon Atty. Gen. Ellen Rosenblum in a written statement. "Over the course of our investigation, it became abundantly clear that Oracle repeatedly lied and defrauded the state. Through this legal action, we intend to make our state whole and make sure taxpayers aren't left holding the bag."

Oregon's suit alleges that Oracle, the largest tech contractor working on the website, falsely convinced officials to buy "hundreds of millions of dollars of Oracle products and services that failed to perform as promised." It is seeking $200 million in damages. Oracle issued a statement saying the suit "is a desperate attempt to deflect blame from Cover Oregon and the governor for their failures to manage a complex IT project. The complaint is a fictional account of the Oregon Healthcare Project."
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Oregon Sues Oracle For "Abysmal" Healthcare Website

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  • Reputation (Score:5, Informative)

    by Livius ( 318358 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @01:27PM (#47737127)

    I don't know if Oregon's suit has merit or not, but that sure sounds like my employer's experience with Oracle.

  • Re:Reputation (Score:5, Informative)

    by alx512 ( 194670 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @01:38PM (#47737191)

    My employer unfortunately uses Oracle's HR management systems also. Worst piece of enterprise software I've ever seen. I have physical pain any time I have to use it. Their big iron databases used to be the shit, but even those seem to be going the way of the dodo as much cheaper, easier to use options are available these days.

  • Re:Reputation (Score:5, Informative)

    by Nemyst ( 1383049 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @01:39PM (#47737197) Homepage
    It sounds like Oracle's fucking business model. Overcommit, underbudget, get the job by being the "cheapest". Once the client's committed to your implementation, claim that the project brief was misleading or something and massively jack up the budget or leave the client with a stinking piece of shit.

    My university's management, financial and student software was upgraded by Oracle. Something like 70 million dollars later, the web frontend is a complete farce full of atrocious design decisions, confusing options and ridiculous limitations. The employee backend is so complicated and useless that you need a fucking MANUAL to use it, and most people need assistance to do basic tasks such as budgeting their funds.
  • Holy crap (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 23, 2014 @01:41PM (#47737209)

    I'm pretty sure for 240 million I'd be able to do it from my bedroom.

  • Deflect blame? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Viol8 ( 599362 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @02:18PM (#47737425) Homepage

    "from Cover Oregon and the governor for their failures to manage a complex IT project."

    Err, excuse me - if Oracle are the contractor its up to THEM to manage the fecking project. Why the hell should the governor be hands on with this? Do they think he's also down at every roadworks checking the spades?

    Usually when you hire a big company like Oracle you give them the requirements, pay them money and they're supposed to deliver the goods, so Oracle whining that they apparently weren't given good enough management is pathetic.

    I wonder what are the odds they used some cheap indian labour who can just about switch on a computer much less deliver a working program. Sorry if some people find that racist, but indian coders in my experience are universally bloody useless.

  • by wizden ( 965907 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @02:22PM (#47737451)
    How is building a website with a database back end a complex project? How does 240 million get spent and they couldn't afford a project manager? I know there are ridiculous integration requirement but this isn't exactly rocket surgery.
  • Re:Oracle sucks. (Score:4, Informative)

    by umdesch4 ( 3036737 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @04:21PM (#47738025)
    Too bad you posted AC, otherwise I could make sure I never hire you. Sorry man, but the last 10 companies I worked for got pretty big things done with Oracle DBs, and were able to host several-terabyte databases doing things that even DB2 would choke on, never mind MySQL or SQL Server, or any other DB I've worked with. I've worked with more companies that have migrated *to* Oracle because they outgrew what they were using, than the other way around. There's always much gnashing of teeth, and angst over going with such a reprehensible company's product...but that's been my experience at least.
  • Re:Reputation (Score:5, Informative)

    by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @04:57PM (#47738253)

    I don't know if Oregon's suit has merit or not, but that sure sounds like my employer's experience with Oracle.

    Mine as well. We have contracts with hundreds of IT companies, and Oracle is by far the worst I've ever dealt with.
    A list of things I've witnessed oracle do first hand that make me hate them:
    1. Relegate "Bugs" to a "Bug list" that is so long you actually have an account you use to log into it and see the endless list of things wrong with their software they haven't gotten around to fixing yet.
    2. Support that's so poor, if you cannot provide them with step by step instructions of exactly how to reproduce it as well as an actual solution to the problem in many cases they will promptly close the ticket and tell you "We were unable to reproduce your issue" I've received that response sometimes within minutes... suggesting they made no attempt at all to look for it. Your local cable company provides better support than oracle.
    3. They intentionally deprecate features to try and prevent you from migrating to other systems. APIs, ODBC access, etc... Then offer to export the data for you for insane amounts of money (hundreds of thousands of dollars)
    4. They actually sent a trainer to us to train us on how to manipulate their own support organization to work tickets. Seriously, 6hrs on how to get support to work your ticket...
    5. With some products they patch, without notice, without testing. I walk in on Monday and find out a patch happened over the weekend I had no idea was going to happen, it brought several applications down. Then, when questioned about it postmortem, they actually said "Why would we notify you of these patches? There is no way they can cause a problem." When I pointed out that they just did, in fact, cause a problem, and that's why we were having this meeting, they said "Well this was a unique situation"
    6. The few applications we have that aren't Oracle, keep getting bought by Oracle. Who then fires everyone, sticks their own, horrendous staff in their place and ruins a product we're locked into a 3yr contract for.
    7. They have breached our contractually and legal obligated security policies no less than 7 times in the past 2 years. Not minor breaches, major ones. In one case access to hosted services they had was controlled by a whitelist. They decided, again without notice, to introduce a 2nd whitelist of API access, and default it to allow all. As a result access to the API for the service was wide open to the entire internet for months before we found out by accident what they had done. They pointed out that they had made the change public by creating a new webpage documenting the new setting, but no, they hadn't actually informed any customers the page existed and the patch that had been applied to implement the setting had been done so without any notifications being sent to anyone.

    I could go on and on... but suffice it to say Oracle is the devil, they hate their customers, want to steel their money and are by far the worst Tech company I've ever dealt with. Burn in hell Oracle.

  • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Saturday August 23, 2014 @05:23PM (#47738395)

    A big part of the blame should go to the Democrats in Congress that passed the law requiring the site to begin with.

    Except that the site was NOT required. Most states did NOT implement their own site, and either default to the federal site or formed a regional partnership.

  • by sjames ( 1099 ) on Sunday August 24, 2014 @03:38AM (#47740773) Homepage Journal

    You conveniently clipped that quote, allow me to fill it in:

    Oral colchicine had been used for many years as an unapproved drug with no prescribing information, dosage recommendations, or drug interaction warnings approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

    All those things existed, the FDA just hadn't whacked them with it's $45million approval stamp.

    The rest of the argument sort of falls apart there.

    Unlike the supplements, colchicine was regulated for purity and accurate dosing and is prescribed by a physician following long-standing medical guidelines and monitored.

    However, I'm going to challenge the article on supplements a bit. I have NEVER seen aconite (aka monks hood) for sale ANYWHERE. It hasn't been used in medicine (folk or otherwise) in the west for nearly a century. That's why, in spite of being a powerful and dangerous poison, you don't read about deaths from it. If you see it listed somewhere, read closely and you'll see it's in homeopathic form (read no actual aconite present).

    Colloidial silver can turn you bluish grey if you use way too much for way too long. Try the same overdose with tylenol and you'll be dead in a week.

    But my advice for the silver is don't take it internally. Externally unless in the eyes, use iodine.

    I have never suffered any ill effects with ephedra, but then I use a sensible dose intermittently for flu-like symptoms, not in mega doses to lose weight or to pretend I don't need sleep. The others are about as likely to cause harm. Note how they didn't compare the 'dirty dozen' to the figures fro the 12 most dangerous FDA approved drugs.

    You might guess from that that there IS dosing and interactionb information out there. They might print it on the bottles if the FDA wouldn't scream 'you didn't say mother may I" and shut them down for selling a drug.

    The manufacturers of the selenium supplement in your link SHOULD be sanctioned for providing a dose well off from that indicated on the label. Note that it has happened with FDA approved drugs as well.

  • Re:It's a complot (Score:5, Informative)

    by cbhacking ( 979169 ) <.moc.oohay. .ta. ... isiurc_tuo_neeb.> on Sunday August 24, 2014 @03:57AM (#47740809) Homepage Journal

    While I agree, in general, with the claims of how shitty Obamacare is...

    I have friends who now have health insurance, and another who has finally been able to leave his old employer (to start his own company and become self-employed), because of Obamacare. Specifically, two of these friends are cancer survivors (throat and cervical), one has fibromyalgia, and one has a chronic autoimmune disorder whose name I forget. They wouldn't have been able to buy health insurance, otherwise; nobody was willing to offer it. So, for them personally, Obamacare *is* better than what they had before.

    Of course, there are a lot of less-fucked-up ways of addressing that issue.

A committee takes root and grows, it flowers, wilts and dies, scattering the seed from which other committees will bloom. -- Parkinson