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Directorate for Management

  • Evaluation of DHS' Information Security Program for Fiscal Year 2018

    Executive Summary

    DHS’ information security program was effective for fiscal year 2018 because the Department earned the targeted maturity rating, “Managed and Measurable” (Level 4) in four of five functions, as compared to last year’s lower overall rating, “Consistently Implemented” (Level 3). We attributed DHS’ progress to improvements in information security risk, configuration management practices, continuous monitoring, and more effective security training. By addressing the remaining deficiencies, DHS can further improve its security program ensuring its systems adequately protect the critical and sensitive data they store and process.

    Report Number
    OIG-19-60
    Issue Date
    Document File
    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
    Fiscal Year
    2019
  • S&T Is Not Effectively Coordinating Research and Development Efforts across DHS

    Executive Summary

    We determined that despite requirements of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, as amended, the Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) did not effectively coordinate and integrate department-wide research and development (R&D) activities.  In August 2015, S&T established Integrated Product Teams (IPTs) as the central mechanism to identify, track, and coordinate department-wide priority R&D efforts.  However, S&T did not follow its IPT process as intended.  Specifically, not all components submitted all information on capability gaps to the IPTs; S&T did not effectively gather, track, and manage data on the Department’s R&D gaps and activities; and S&T did not adequately monitor the IPT process to ensure it was effective.  As a result, S&T may not be able to provide the Secretary of Homeland Security and Congress with an accurate profile of the Department’s R&D activities or justify funding needs for a wide range of missions, including securing the border, detecting nuclear devices, and screening airline passengers.  We made three recommendations to improve S&T’s coordination of R&D activities across DHS.  S&T concurred with our recommendations.

    Report Number
    OIG-19-59
    Issue Date
    Document File
    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
    Fiscal Year
    2019
  • DOJ and DHS OIGs Release a Joint Review of Law Enforcement Cooperation on the Southwest Border between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Homeland Security Investigations

    For Information Contact

    DOJ OIG: John Lavinsky, (202) 514-3435

    DHS OIG: Erica Paulson, (202) 981-6000

    For Immediate Release

    Download PDF (103.34 KB)

    Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz and Department Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General Joseph V. Cuffari announced today the release of a joint review examining law enforcement cooperation on the Southwest border between DOJ’s Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and DHS Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).  The FBI and HSI share many of the same statutory authorities to investigate certain crimes, underscoring the need for agents to share information and manage investigative overlap effectively.

    The Offices of Inspector General (OIGs) found that the majority (63%) of FBI and HSI Southwest border agents did not encounter cooperation failures, and agents reported that task forces improved cooperation and allowed for increased collaboration between the FBI and HSI.  However, of the 37% of agents who did experience cooperation failures, 87% reported at least one negative impact as a result, such as loss of trust, unnecessarily prolonged investigations, and failure to gather evidence or apprehend a target. 
    The report identified several factors that may have contributed to these cooperation failures, including:

    • The FBI and HSI had inconsistent practices, lacked specific policies, and many agents were unaware of requirements related to deconfliction. In February 2019, ICE issued an agency-specific deconfliction policy that may result in improvements.

    • Many agents did not understand the other agency’s mission and authorities and did not trust the other agency or its personnel. 

    • DOJ and DHS do not have a memorandum of understanding related to cooperation on the Southwest border. 
    The DOJ OIG and DHS OIG made five recommendations to the FBI and HSI to address these cooperation challenges.  The FBI agreed with all five recommendations.  HSI agreed with three of the recommendations and did not concur with two of them.
    Today’s report is available:

    • On the DOJ OIG website: https://oig.justice.gov/reports/2019/e1903.pdf

    • On the DHS OIG website: https://www.oig.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/assets/2019-08/OIG-19-57-Jul19.pdf

    • On Oversight.gov: https://www.oversight.gov/report/doj/joint-review-law-enforcement-cooperation-southwest-border-between-federal-bureau

    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
  • DHS OIG Commemorates National Whistleblower Appreciation Day

    For Information Contact

    Public Affairs (202) 981-6000

    For Immediate Release

    Download PDF (87.25 KB)

    Today, agencies across the federal government will commemorate National Whistleblower Appreciation Day. This day memorializes those individuals, from as early as the American Revolutionary War, who have had the courage to speak up and hold our government accountable to its fundamental values.

    The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) relies on whistleblowers to report waste, fraud, and abuse in DHS programs and operations. This effort is led in part by OIG’s Whistleblower Protection Coordinator who is responsible for educating and advising all DHS employees about whistleblower protection rights and remedies.  Additionally, DHS OIG’s Whistleblower Protection Unit, responsible for handling all allegations of whistleblower retaliation filed with the OIG, has reviewed 184 retaliation complaints during the first half of fiscal year 2019.

    “Today, we recognize the vital contributions of the whistleblowers who have and will continue to shape our democracy by ‘blowing the whistle’”, said Deputy Inspector General Jennifer Costello.  

    Individuals who are aware of fraud, waste, abuse or mismanagement of DHS resources are encouraged to contact OIG via OIG’s Hotline or by calling (800) 323-8603. Whistleblowers can choose to remain anonymous when reporting to the OIG and the OIG Whistleblower Protection Coordinator is always available to provide general information to DHS employees and contractors on whistleblower rights and protections.

    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
  • Department of Homeland Security's FY 2018 Compliance with the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act of 2010 and Executive Order 13520, Reducing Improper Payments

    Executive Summary

    The Department of Homeland Security did not comply with the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act of 2010 (IPERA) because the Department did not meet two of the six requirements. Specifically, the Department omitted the percent of recaptured amounts from the Other Information section in its Agency Financial Report and did not meet its annual reduction target established for one of eight programs deemed susceptible to significant improper payments.The Department also did not comply with Executive Order 13520, Reducing Improper Payments, because DHS did not make available to the public its Quarterly High-Dollar Overpayment report for the second quarter of fiscal year 2018.

    Report Number
    OIG-19-43
    Issue Date
    Document File
    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
    Fiscal Year
    2019
  • DHS Needs to Address Oversight and Program Deficiencies before Expanding the Insider Threat Program

    Executive Summary

    DHS expanded the Insider Threat Program from monitoring user activity on its classified networks to monitoring cleared and non-cleared employees’ activity on unclassified networks. We initiated a project to determine Insider Threat Program progress in monitoring, detecting, and responding to malicious insider threats on unclassified DHS systems and networks. Before continuing its planned expansion of the Insider Threat Program, DHS needs to address several deficiencies that may hinder program effectiveness and efficiency. Although the expanded program was approved in January 2017, the Office of the Chief Security Officer has yet to revise, obtain approval for, and reissue required documentation.

    Report Number
    OIG-19-42
    Issue Date
    DHS Agency
    Oversight Area
    Fiscal Year
    2019
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