Summary: FASFA on the Web
Author: CPS - Central Processing System (CPS)
February 25, 1997
The U.S. Department of Education is developing a Web site where
students will be able to complete a FAFSA online and transmit it to
the Central Processing System (CPS) via the Internet. FAFSA on the
Web, as it will be called, will be available to students on June 30,
1997 and will work much like FAFSA Express.
The FAFSA on the Web project is being developed in a phased
approach with each new phase offering additional functionality. In
the first phase of the project, the phase starting up on June 30, 1997,
students will need to print and mail a paper signature page or will
have their FAFSA processed with a signature reject (reject 16) that
can only be rectified by signing a SAR that is subsequently
processed by the CPS.
In the second phase of the project, which will come online in January
1998, FAFSA on the Web will offer a Renewal Application option as
well as the online FAFSA application. In this phase of the project,
the U.S. Department of Education will continue to rely on the paper
signature page/reject 16 mechanism since there has yet to be
developed a trusted digital signature standard.
Since the Department is collecting Privacy Act information that will
be used to determine an individual's eligibility for an entitlement
program, considerable emphasis has been placed on the ability to
protect and authenticate information provided by applicants.
Protection of application information is being handled by Secure
Socket Layer (SSL) 3.0 encryption, which means that students will
only be able to access this application with a web browser that
utilizes this encryption protocol. The good news is that students can
use FAFSA on the Web regardless of the type of computer system
they are using (i.e., Windows 3.1, Windows 95, or MacIntosh) as
long as they are equipped with a web browser that supports this