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Payments, Claims and Enhanced Reconciliation (PACER)

LAN and Telecommunications Frequently Asked Questions

What telecommunications software should agencies use to access PACER On-Line?

Agencies will use Procomm Plus 3.0 or higher for on-line access to inquire about check status and to initiate claims.

Is FMSnet part of Enterprise, the hardware and telecommunications platform on which PACER On-Line runs?

Yes. FMSnet is the telecommunications link to FMS (now Bureau of the Fiscal Service) systems. It is a highly reliable, available, and secure multi-purpose network to support Fiscal Service and the Federal Program Agencies.

What cost will Federal Program Agencies s incur for digital imaging (DI) and PACER On-Line?

Fiscal Service will not charge an agency to utilize PACER On-Line.

Agencies may incur costs for the requisite hardware and software (see Equipment Requirements list).

The main charge to the user will be the telephone line usage charges incurred while on-line, receiving or transmitting information.

There is no charge for DIs of checks that are less than 18 months old (since the check was issued). The only charge payable to Fiscal Service will be a charge for check images that are older than 18 months (following date the of issuance) which is also done in today's environment.

The current cost is $5.50. Fiscal Service has developed a cost strategy for check copies in an imaging environment.

Can more than one person log into PACER On-Line at one time?

Yes. PACER On-Line accommodates multiple users.

Do Federal Program Agencies need to switch from a 286 PC to a 386 (or 486) to use PACER On-Line?

The minimum requirement for PACER On-Line is a 386 PC, assuming the agency does not want to view digital images.

For agencies that wish to view digital images, Fiscal Service recommends a minimum of a 486 (Please refer to the Equipment Requirements list for additional information).

Will the USER ID be the same as the 14-character GOALS ID?

No. PACER On-Line will have its own user IDs.

Will the password be generated by Fiscal Service?

Yes. Fiscal Service will generate the password initially, but the user must change the password at his/her first sign-on to PACER On-Line.

Passwords will expire every 30 days and must be changed by the user when prompted to do so by the PACER On-Line system.

What is the minimum modem speed needed for retrieving or viewing Digital Images?

The minimum speed is 14,400 bps. The recommended speed is 28,800 bps or higher.

Can we use a LAN to retrieve or view digital images?

Yes, if there is a LAN connection between the agency and Fiscal Service. The agency would also need a terminal emulator package for non-digital imaging access, and Citrix Winframe client package, resident in the PC, for digital imaging access.

If the agency has a modem and a DI software application on its LAN, it can be used to retrieve or view digital images.

A LAN may also be used to inquire and initiate action in PACER On-Line if the Procomm telecommunications software is on the agency's LAN connection. (See Equipment Requirements list for details.)

Does PACER On-Line have security functions built into the system?

Yes, PACER On-Line has several layers of access security built into it.

A secure ID card and Fiscal Service password is needed to gain access to the mainframe. A password and user ID combination is used to gain access into the PACER On-Line system.

Once into the system, PACER On-Line determines exactly what information an individual has access to based on the User Access Control List and User Profile previously submitted by the agency management.

The User Profile defines the level of security and access to information allowed for each employee who will use the system.

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