GAO recently released new procedures for filing and handling bid protests involving classified material. The procedures emphasize that classified material cannot be filed on GAO’s Electronic Protest Docketing System (EPDS) under any circumstances. Instead:
- Initial Protest Filing: GAO protests involving any classified material should be filed with the agency and not in EPDS. Both the protester and agency should immediately notify GAO of the filing. GAO will then complete an unclassified notification form and provide the completed form to the protester to file on EPDS.
- Other Filings: Once the protest has been initiated, the GAO attorney will provide further instruction regarding how future filings should be handled. For filings that potentially involve classified material, the filing party must submit the filing first to the agency for security review, unless directed otherwise by GAO.
- Timeliness: The date a classified protest or classified filing is filed with the agency is considered to be the date filed with GAO for timeliness purposes.
The complete procedures are available on GAO’s website.