Magazine article Occupational Hazards

EPA Shuts Down Its Web Site

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

EPA Shuts Down Its Web Site

Article excerpt

First came a General Accounting Office (GAO) report stating that hackers could be stealing sensitive and confidential information off EPA's Web site.

Then there was the decision of a prominent congressman to tell the world about the problem. Result: EPA shut down its Web site for nearly a week in mid-February. Several weeks later, the data on the Internet site had been only partially restored.

"The Web site is back online to serve HTML pages; but at this time, several other systems that support the agency Web site are not yet ready to be reattached to the Internet server," stated a March 6 EPA notice explaining the status of its Internet address.

The EPA Web site is a treasure trove of information used by environmental managers, but it is difficult to determine how much the shutdown is interfering with the dissemination of vital information. "It is a site I do use periodically as a reference if I have questions on regulation issues," said Larry Boehm environmental manager at Dayco Eastman in Manitowoc, Wis.

Keith Rosenstiel, health and safety manager for PerkinElmer Inc. in Beltsville, Md., agreed, saying he uses the agency's Web site for hazardous waste reports, reporting requirements and regulatory information.

Precisely because of the wealth of data available, however, it appears to be difficult even for those at EPA to know what is and what is not on the Web site. An EPA spokesman said he did not know whether information on regulatory changes was available or not. He counseled those interested in such information to go to the Government Printing Office Web site at www. …

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