It is possible to suffer from some level of failure using an IBM model M, but not in the keyboard itself. The cord, though as tank-like as a cord can be, is quite likely the most critical-damage-prone portion of the keyboard. Should you be suffering bizarre problems with your IBM model M, do NOT throw it away. Instead, try first giving it a thorough cleaning. If this does not resolve the issue, attempt to find a replacement cord. There are some available on the internet to those who use Google.