Refer to the SEER*Stat Frequently Asked Questions for information about using the software.


1. I had access to the Research Data before April 15, 2022. How do I get the latest data?

If you submitted a request for data prior to April 15, 2022, your account is not valid to access the current data release. Accounts expire on April 30, 2022. To continue to use the SEER data, you need to submit a new request for the latest release which includes the 1975-2019 SEER Research Data (November 2021 Submission), as well as access to the two previous submissions.

For detailed instructions, see How to Request Access to SEER Data.


2. What are Institutional and Non-Institutional Account holders?

An “Institutional Account” refers to the process for people affiliated with an organization to authenticate using their individual eRA Commons or HHS accounts in the SEER Data Request System to request access to the data.

  • If you are within NIH or one of the other five HHS agencies listed below, you must apply with your PIV card or HHS credentials.
  • All others affiliated with an organization (students and researchers at domestic and international universities, for-profit and not-for-profit company employees, state and federal government employees) are required to apply for SEER data access through an eRA Commons account (see FAQs below for more information).

Please note: for requests based on eRA Commons accounts, the email address used must be affiliated with your institute/university/company. Requests using open email accounts like gmail, icloud, 163.com etc. will be rejected.

If you have access to an Institutional Account, you MUST use it to request the SEER data. NCI retains the right to revoke Non-Institutional Accounts used for institution-related work.

HHS agencies that can use their PIV Cards to request with an institutional account include the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Indian Health Service (IHS), and National Institutes of Health (NIH). All other government agencies will need to submit a request through obtaining eRA commons credentials.

Non-Institutional Accounts are for people not affiliated with any organization. If you register for a SEER*Stat account with a Non-Institutional email, you will receive access to just the Research data. Additional steps are required to access the Research Plus data.


3. What is eRA Commons and how do I obtain an account?

eRA Commons is an online system that authenticates organizational users using the information registered in the  NIH eRA Commons for controlled and managed data access. The eRA Commons account is not limited to U.S. researchers. Many foreign organizations have already registered with eRA.

If you have a new eRA Commons account or made changes to an existing account, allow 2 days for the new information to be reflected before attempting to make a request in the SEER Data Request System.

Using Login.gov credentials for eRA Commons accounts

Beginning September 15, 2021, eRA Commons transitioned to the use of Login.gov credentials, instead of eRA Commons username and password, to log in. For more information, see the Linking Login.gov and eRA Commons accounts FAQ. If you just linked your Login.gov and eRA Commons accounts, allow 2 days for the changes to propagate to the SEER Data Request System.

How do I obtain an eRA commons account?

First check with your institution to see if your institution is registered with eRA Commons. If it is, the eRA Commons account administrator of your institution should be able to help you create your eRA account.

If your institution has never setup an eRA Commons account, please see FAQ #4 for the information related to institutional eRA account setup.

You will need to contact the eRA Commons Signing Official (SO) or Account Administrator (AA) at your institute/organization to establish a new account and/or add roles or affiliations to an existing account.

When your account is created, you will receive an email to go to eRA Commons to verify your profile information.

The eRA system is not operated by the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program. To get a new eRA Commons account or make any changes to an existing eRA Commons account, such as resetting the password or changing the email address, please visit the eRA website or directly contact the eRA help desk.

Who can apply for an eRA Commons account?

There are several roles available in eRA Commons. Here are some examples of common uses:

  • A Principal Investigator (PI) is an individual who directs a research project or program supported by the NIH or NCI. The role of the PI within the eRA Commons portal is to complete the grant administration or data access process or to delegate this responsibility to another individual. A PI may only access information pertaining to the grant(s) or data access request on which he/she is the designated PI.
  • An Undergraduate Student is an individual who is in an undergraduate program and wants to access cancer registry data for work related to their classes or research studies.
  • A Graduate Student is an individual who is in a graduate program and wants to access cancer registry data for work related to their classes or research studies.

Detailed instructions for creating and affiliating accounts can be found in the Accounts Module Online Help System

What if I cannot determine the Signing Official for my institute?

If you cannot locate the appropriate person at your institution, contact the eRA Service Desk by:

  • Submitting a Web ticket at https://public.era.nih.gov/commonshelp (web ticket is preferred method of contact)
  • Toll-free: 1-866-504-9552
  • Phone: 301-402-7469
  • Hours: Mon-Fri, 7a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time (Except for Federal holidays)

4. I don’t think my institution is registered with eRA Commons. Do they need to set this up before I can access this data?

Yes, your institution or organization will need to register with NIH eRA Commons before you can obtain an eRA Commons account required to access the SEER Research Plus data. Institutions are usually registered by someone in the business office, since it requires financial information (such as the DUNS number). Once registration is complete, the eRA Commons account administrator of the institution should be able to assist individuals to setup their own eRA Commons account.

Note that each institutional user who wants access to the SEER data must submit their own request using their individual eRA account.


5. How do I use my eRA Commons account to request SEER data?

Once you have an active eRA Commons account linked to a Login.gov account to authenticate with eRA Commons, you can request access to the SEER Research Plus data using the Institutional Account option.

  1. Go to the SEER Data Request System.
  2. Use the Institutional Account Login option.
  3. On the NIH Sign in page, scroll down to the Login.gov button at the bottom of the page.

    Note that Smart Card and Authenticator App options are for HHS and NIH users, not eRA Commons accounts.
  4. Log in with your Login.gov username and password associated with your eRA Commons account.

Troubleshooting

  • If you get a "Logged Out" message, be sure your eRA Commons account is linked to a Login.gov account. Refer to the Logged Out FAQ for more information.
  • You cannot request the SEER Research Data through the eRA Commons website directly. You will use your eRA Commons login to authenticate with the SEER Data Request System through the Institutional Account Login option.
  • Each individual is required to have their own eRA Commons account to request the data. Refer to the eRA Account FAQ for more details.

 


6. What is a Signing Official and how do I identify mine?

The Signing Official is the person who has the legal authority for the institution's assurance of the terms of the SEER Research Data Use Agreement. For example, your institute's Provost or Director of Research Affairs could serve as a Signing Official.

  • For eRA Commons account holders, see FAQ #3 for more details.
  • For NIH and HHS account holders, this is your division director.
  • For Non-Institutional users, the person requesting the data will also serve as the Signing Official for the data access request application.
    • In this case, the name and email address for both the requestor and signing official fields must match.

Please note:

  • The Signing Official’s name and email address are required, but they will not be contacted and required to sign off on the SEER data request.
  • For eRA Commons and NIH and HHS account holders, the email address for the Signing Official used on the request form must be affiliated with your institute/university/company.
    • Requests using open email accounts like gmail, icloud, 163.com etc., will be rejected and asked to correct the email addresses.

7. How can I tell if my Login.gov and eRA Commons accounts are linked?

To test whether your Login.gov and eRA Commons accounts are linked, you should log into the eRA Common website, not the Login.gov website. Follow these steps – this will also allow you to link your accounts if you have not yet done so.

  1. Go to the eRA Commons website: https://public.era.nih.gov/commons/
  2. Use the Login with Login.gov option.
    • If you already have a Login.gov account, enter your email address and password, and then complete the 2-factor authentication.
    • If you do not have a Login.gov account, follow the options to “Create an account”.
    Electronic Research Administration page displaying the message Login with Login.gov above a LOGIN.GOV link
  3. After logging in:
    • If you are directed to your eRA profile page immediately, your accounts are linked.
    • If you see the following screen that prompts for your eRA Credentials, the accounts are not yet linked. Continue to Step 4.
      Electronic Research Administration page reading Associate your eRA Account. Authentication Source: LOGIN.GOV. LOGIN.GOV Primary Email Address. Below are fields prompting for the eRA User ID and eRA User Password and a Continue button.
  4. Enter your original eRA User ID and Password. This step will link your accounts.

If you just linked your accounts, please wait up to 2 days for the information to propagate to the SEER Data Request System before trying to request the data. For additional information, refer to the eRA Commons website.


8. My Login.gov account didn't work; I got a Logged Out message when I tried to request the SEER data. What do I do?

Login.gov accounts alone are not sufficient for requesting SEER Research Plus data through the Institutional Account request process. Users must have an active eRA Commons account linked to their Login.gov account.

If you login with your Login.gov credentials and are directed to the NIH Logout page, refer to the table below for help.

NIH Logout page displaying the message Logged out, You have logged out of NIH Login
Why do I get a logout screen: What do I do:
  1. Your eRA Commons account is not active.
  1. Your eRA Commons account is active, but it is not linked to your Login.gov account.
  1. You just linked your Login.gov and eRA Commons accounts.
  • Please allow up to 2 days for the changes to propagate to the SEER Data Request System.

9. I get an HTTP Status Error after logging into the request system. What do I do?

If after logging into the SEER Data Request System with your Login.gov account you go to a page with an HTTP Status 500 – Internal Server Error (or similar error), please try the following:

  1. Refresh the page. This clears up the error for most people and loads the request form.
  2. Go back to the main SEER Request page and follow the steps again.
  3. Try another web browser, if available.
Page displaying the message HTTP Status 500 -- Internal Server Error. Type: Status Report. Message: Interal Error occurred while trying to process the request. Transaction ID failed. Description: The server encountered an unexpected condition that prevented it from fulfilling the request.

If you cannot get past this error page, please contact SEERDataAccess@mail.nih.gov for help.


10. The email address field is blank when I login with my eRA Commons account. How can I fix it?

When you login with an eRA Commons account, your email address should be filled in automatically from your eRA Commons record. Some users have encountered an issue where the email address field is blank and they cannot complete the SEER data request form.

To fix the issue, log into your account through the eRA Commons website and make sure all the required demographic information is complete. Even if the email address is already complete, we've found the issue can occur when other required fields are blank, such as date of birth, race, and sex.


11. My email address does not match the one on my eRA Commons account. What do I do?

If you logged into the SEER request system at least once already with your eRA Commons account and have since changed your email address in eRA Commons, the updated email address will not be reflected in the SEER data request system.

This is a known issue that we hope to resolve soon. In the meantime, please contact seerstat@imsweb.com and we will help update your email address in the request system.


12. Can I request the Research Plus data for personal use?

Yes, you can request the data for personal use, but you must go through the Non-Institutional Users request process.

If you are affiliated with an institution or company, but are requesting the Research Plus data for personal use, you must:

  • Use your personal email address,
  • Leave the Organization field blank, and
  • Use your own name and email address for the Signing Official. The name and email address for both the requestor and signing official fields must match.

Your request will be rejected if you use a personal email address and include your organizational details.


13. I have a named SEER*Stat account. How do I request access to the Research Plus Data?

If you currently have a named SEER*Stat account (e.g. a personalized username rather than the format xxxxx-Nov2020):

  1. Verify that your SEER*Stat named account is linked to your official institutional email address:
    • To check, login to SEER*Stat with your named account and then go to the Client-Server User Information dialog (from the Profile menu).
    • If the email address associated with your institutional account does not match the email address used with your named SEER*Stat account, please contact seerstat@imsweb.com to change it in SEER*Stat.
  2. Follow the directions to request access through an Institutional Account.
  3. When your request is approved, SEER will automatically update access for your named account to the latest data.

If you use a different email address, you will get a new SEER*Stat username (xxxxx-Nov2021). To reconcile accounts, send the new username along with your “named account” username to IMS at seerstat@imsweb.com. IMS will merge this information so you get the new access added to your existing named account.


14. My email address changed. Do I need to submit a new request for data?

Yes. If you change institutions and your primary email address changes, or your institution updates the format of their email addresses, you will need to submit a new request for the SEER data. It is no longer possible to update the email address associated with your account in SEER*Stat.


15. When do SEER*Stat accounts expire?

SEER*Stat usernames expire on April 30 of each year, two weeks after new research data are released on April 15. On April 1, we stop taking requests for the current data to prepare for the April 15 release.


16. Are any countries blocked from accessing SEER data?

In order to comply with U.S. trade controls, access to SEER data is blocked from U.S. embargoed countries. For more information, refer to the Sanctioned Destinations Guidance.


17. Who do I contact for more help?

There are several options to contact the SEER program for questions about the data and the request process. Refer to the SEER Data Contacts page for more information.