Establishment of an Inspector General at the Central Intelligence Agency

T-AFMD-88-6: Published: Mar 1, 1988. Publicly Released: Mar 1, 1988.

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GAO discussed the establishment of an Inspector General (IG) at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), specifically the: (1) effectiveness of the Inspector General Act of 1978 in uncovering abuses and improving agency operations; (2) ability of statutory IG to protect classified information; and (3) value of a statutory IG for CIA. GAO found that: (1) the act has played a significant role in strengthening federal internal audit and investigative activities and improving the federal government's operations; (2) IG efforts in uncovering fraud, waste, and abuse from 1982 to 1986 resulted in recoveries rising from $45.3 million to $191.8 million, prosecutions increasing from 2,099 to 4,094 cases, sanctions against contractors increasing from 502 to 2,047, and annual finding and avoidance of unnecessary expenses increasing from $11.5 billion to $20 billion; (3) reviews have not disclosed instances of weakened security or confidentiality in agencies with statutory IG; and (4) a statutory IG at CIA was as appropriate and effective as for other agencies with statutory IG. GAO believes that: (1) amending the act would ensure consistency in the organization and operation of the various IG offices; and (2) Congress may wish to consider specifying CIA IG qualifications, giving IG access to records, and ensuring that IG has direct access to the head of CIA to help strengthen the bill.

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