DOL Shuts Down Injury Reporting System Amid Possible Breach

Date First Published on SafetySmart Compliance: August 18th, 2017

The Labor Department temporarily shut down a portal for employers to report injuries and illnesses while the agency investigates a “potential compromise” of a company’s electronic data, a DOL official told Bloomberg BNA Aug. 16.

The possible breach comes as the Trump administration earlier this year suspended, and is now considering reversing, a 2016 regulation that would have required for the first-time hundreds of thousands of businesses to electronically report employee injuries. Trade groups and employers that oppose the rule have cited concerns that data could be publicized and accessed by unions to critique safety performance and reveal other employee information.

The Homeland Security Department informed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Aug. 14 that “there is a potential compromise of user information for OSHA’s Injury Tracking Application,” according to the DOL official. “At this time, one company appears to have been affected and that company has been notified of the issue. Access to the ITA has been temporarily suspended as OSHA works with the system developer to examine the issue to determine the extent of the problem.”

The official didn’t identify the company involved in the possible breach.

OSHA’s tracking website currently loads with an alert stating that “due to technical difficulties with the website, some pages are temporarily unavailable.” The portal went live Aug. 1, although the initial compliance phase of the regulation isn’t scheduled to take effect until Dec. 1.

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