Computer Systems:

Overview of Federal Systems for Processing Aliens Seeking U.S. Entry

IMTEC-88-55BR: Published: Sep 9, 1988. Publicly Released: Oct 12, 1988.

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GAO reviewed the Department of State's, the Immigration and Naturalization Service's (INS), and the Customs Service's automated systems for processing aliens seeking entry into the United States.

GAO found that: (1) at diplomatic and consular posts, State uses the Automated Visa Lookout System to process visa applications; (2) at ports of entry, INS uses the National Automated Immigration Lookout System, and Customs uses the Treasury Enforcement Communications System II to clear individuals and their possessions; and (3) the systems maintain records on millions of individuals who may not be eligible or legally entitled to admission to the United States. GAO also found that, in fiscal year (FY) 1987: (1) State reviewed about 9.2 million visa applications; (2) INS inspected about 204 million aliens for admission; and (3) Customs inspected about 310 million individuals. In addition, GAO found that: (1) costs for the INS system totalled $2.8 million for FY 1987; (2) Customs' projected system costs for FY 1988 were $8.3 million; and (3) State did not separately identify its system's costs.

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