Users Report Issues with Federal Business Opportunities Website

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Customer service agents advised users to keep trying.

Some users are reporting issues accessing the Federal Business Opportunities website—www.fbo.gov—but it is not clear whether the problems are technical in nature or related to the government shutdown.

Nextgov learned of the issue from readers through email and Twitter.

The FBO site is the portal through which the federal government engages with industry regarding procurements, acquisitions and requests for information, quotes or proposals. Any issue with the FBO site could further complicate the situation for contractors, who are dealing with their own batch of shutdown-related problems. Contracting experts suggest that vendor should submit questions and bids according to previously posted deadlines, even if the contracting agency is shut down.

FBO.gov is operated by the General Services Administration, which did not respond to questions from Nextgov by press time.

However, a representative from the Federal Service Desk told Nextgov the issues appear to affect users who use Comcast as an internet service provider and did not appear shutdown-related. The representative said customer service agents were advised to instruct users unable to access to wait up to a few hours and refresh the site, and to guide users to FBO’s website link on the Federal Service Desk webpage.

“I don’t think it is shutdown related, I think it is technical,” the representative said. “We’re telling individuals if you are using Comcast to try again later to see if you can load it back on.”

Some people attempting to access FBO.gov turned to the website isitdownrightnow.com, leaving comments that the domain name system—the protocol that maps numerical internet addresses to website names—appeared not to be working.    

Per its shutdown guidelines, GSA is relatively immune compared to most agencies since many of its departments are fee-funded—like the Federal Acquisition Service—or funded through working capital funds, like GSA’s IT shop.

Nextgov has reached out to Comcast and will update this story if we receive comment.