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The SEC wants to upgrade access to its regulatory filing system and is seeking comments on EDGAR Next—Improving Filer Access and Account Management.

“The SEC is considering potential technical changes to how filers access the EDGAR system to make submissions, and how filers manage individuals who file on their behalf, which we have branded as EDGAR Next,” the SEC said on Sept. 30, 2021. “Benefits of EDGAR Next include enhancing the security of EDGAR, improving the ability of filers to securely maintain access to their EDGAR account, facilitating responsible management of EDGAR credentials, and simplifying procedures for accessing EDGAR.”

EDGAR is Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis and Retrieval.

The commission wants comments on Release No. 33-10993, Request for Comment on Potential Technical Changes to EDGAR Filer Access and Filer Account Management Processes.

Comments are due the later of Dec. 1 or 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

EDGAR Beta

The SEC said EDGAR Beta will be available on Oct. 12 to allow filers to review and test many of the potential technical changes to filer access and account management. There will be a sign-up for EDGAR Beta page.

The beta site has most of the potential changes to filer access and account management processes, including integration of Login.gov into EDGAR access. The beta version will also have a revised EDGAR Filer Management website and a new user management function.

Other functions will be added to EDGAR Beta in November.

“We currently anticipate that EDGAR Beta will remain open during the SEC’s consideration of the potential technical changes to EDGAR filer access and account management processes, and that EDGAR Beta will be used thereafter to allow filers to test possible future technical changes to EDGAR,” the SEC said.

Some key components of EDGAR Next

Each individual who seeks to file on EDGAR would need unique account credentials from a third-party service provider to log into EDGAR filing websites.

Login.gov would be the third-party service provider. This is an official website of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) that provides federal agencies with a secure public sign-in service.

EDGAR Next would require each filer to designate at least one filer administrator. This person would be someone who is authorized by the company to manage individual users.

There would be a minimum of two filer administrators but no maximum number of administrators.

Filer users are individuals who are authorized to make submissions on behalf of the filer. The next step after obtaining Login.gov credentials is completion of Form ID, the uniform application for EDGAR access, by the filer administrator.

If access is granted, the filer administrator will get a new Central Index Key (CIK) and a link to EDGAR Filer Management website.

At this website, filer administration would be able to, among other things, add or remove a user, add or remove a filer administrator, and change the permissions of a user to a filer administrator and vice versa.

The SEC noted that filers often use a filing agent—a law firm, financial printer, or others—the potential new processes would allow filers to delegate filing authority to the filing agent.

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