Malware Attack on Louisiana Workforce Commission Leaves Job Seekers in Limbo

Photo courtesy of LWC

Thousands of Louisianans on unemployment were left in limbo this week when the Louisiana Workforce Commission’s HiRE website was taken down in response to an attempted malware attack. Geographic Solutions (GSI), a state contractor, discovered the attempted attack, which affected 41 states and the District of Columbia on Wednesday. According to its website, GSI is the “leading vendor” of employment software for both local and state agencies.

“The outage impacts the nearly 11,000 people currently filing continued claims for unemployment in Louisiana,” a Louisiana Workforce Commission statement said. “GSI has prioritized Louisiana for restoring the HiRE website, and we remain fully committed to working with them to bring our systems back online as soon as possible.”

According to state officials, payments to eligible unemployed claimants will be delayed until the system is back online.

“For HiRE users who filed weekly certifications prior to the system outage but have not yet received payment, LWC will prioritize ensuring payments are issued promptly once the website is back online,” the LWC statement read. “LWC will issue further instructions to users who have not yet filed a weekly certification, once access to the HiRE site has been restored to ensure all eligible users have an opportunity to file claims.”

For users with questions or concerns, LWC has reopened its call centers. In addition, weekly certifications for unemployment can also be filed through the automated phone system (866-783-5567) by selecting ‘Option 2’ and following the prompts.

While LWC has said they estimate the system will be restored within 72 hours, at least one person told WAFB that a call center employee told her if could be longer.

“When I called, they told me they didn’t know. I was told it could be a week, or it could be a month. Just keep filing,” Heider Turner said. “That’s all really that they told me because they have no information.”

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