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Testimony:

Before the Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State, and the Judiciary, 
Committee on Appropriations, House of Representatives:

United States General Accounting Office:

GAO:

For Release on Delivery Expected at 1:00 p.m. EDT:

Wednesday, June 18, 2003:

FBI REORGANIZATION:

Progress Made in Efforts to Transform, but Major Challenges Continue:

Statement of David M. Walker, Comptroller General of the United States:

GAO-03-759T:

GAO Highlights:

Highlights of GAO-03-759T, a testimony before the Subcommittee on 
Commerce, Justice, State, and the Judiciary, Committee on 
Appropriations, House of Representatives 

Why GAO Did This Study:

Following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the FBI needed to 
refocus its efforts to investigate those attacks and to detect and 
prevent possible future attacks. To do this the FBI has taken steps to 
change its priorities and sought to transform itself to more 
effectively address the potential terrorist threats. This testimony 
specifically addresses the FBIís (1) progress in updating its 
strategic plan; (2) development of a strategic human capital plan; (3) 
realignment of staff resources to priority areas; (4) reallocation of 
staff resources from its drug program; (5) efforts to recruit and hire 
new personnel to address critical staffing needs; (6) efforts to 
enhance its training program; and (7) implementation of new 
investigative authorities and internal controls to ensure compliance 
with the revised Attorney Generalís Guidelines on General Crimes, 
Racketeering Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations and to 
help protect individual civil liberties.

What GAO Found:

Last June, GAO highlighted the importance of the FBIís success in 
transforming itself, noting several basic aspects of a successful 
transformation. Thus far, GAO is encouraged by the progress that the 
FBI has made in some areas in the past year, but a number of major 
challenges remain. 

The commitment of Director Mueller and senior level leadership to the 
FBIís reorganization and the FBIís communication of priorities warrant 
recognition. However, a comprehensive transformation plan with key 
milestones and assessment points to guide its overall transformation 
efforts is still needed. The FBI has also not completed updating its 
strategic plan and has not developed a strategic human capital plan, 
although it has made some progress in both these areas. 

To better ensure focus on the highest priorities, over the last year, 
several actions were taken, including permanently redirecting a 
portion of the field agent workforce from criminal investigative 
programs to counterterrorism and counterintelligence. 

Increase in Allocation of FBI Field Agent Positions to Priority Areas

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

However, the FBI continues to face challenges in critical staffing 
areas including: (1) utilizing staff resources from other criminal 
investigative programs to address counterterrorism, and (2) a lack of 
adequate analytical and technical assistance and administrative 
support personnel.

The FBIís efforts to address critical skill needs and revise its 
training program are commendable. GAO also found internal controls in 
place to help ensure compliance with the revised Attorney Generalís 
Guidelines and protect individual civil liberties.

www.gao.gov/cgi-bin/getrpt?GAO-03-759T.

To view the full product, including the scope and methodology, click 
on the link above. For more information, contact Laurie E. Ekstrand at 
(202) 512-8777 or ekstrandl@gao.gov.

[End of section]

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee:

I appreciate the opportunity to return today to discuss the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation's (FBI) transformation efforts and the 
implementation of new authorities granted agents under the revised 
Attorney General's Guidelines on General Crimes, Racketeering 
Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations. As a follow up to 
the statement that I provided in June 2002,[Footnote 1] and at your 
request, my testimony today will specifically address the FBI's:

* progress updating its strategic plan;

* development of a strategic human capital plan;

* realignment of staff resources to priority areas;

* reallocation of staff resources from its drug program;

* efforts to recruit and hire new personnel to address critical 
staffing needs;

* efforts to enhance its training program; and:

* implementation of specific investigative authorities associated with 
the revised Attorney General's Guidelines and internal controls to 
ensure compliance with the Guidelines and to help protect individual 
civil liberties.[Footnote 2]

To prepare this testimony, we (1) reviewed FBI planning documents, 
budgetary, staffing, and workload data; written policies and 
procedures; and other pertinent documents related to the FBI's 
reengineering and realignment efforts and implementation of the revised 
Attorney General's Guidelines; (2) interviewed management and program 
officials at FBI headquarters as well as management personnel in charge 
of operations in 14 FBI field offices;[Footnote 3] and (3) obtained 
input from 176 special agents and 34 analysts in these 14 FBI field 
offices using a structured questionnaire and follow up interview 
questions.[Footnote 4] To address the effect of the FBI's realignment 
on drug enforcement efforts, we also interviewed selected Department of 
Justice (DOJ) and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officials as 
well as local law enforcement representatives.[Footnote 5] 
Additionally, we analyzed DEA's budget, staffing, and workload data and 
DOJ's Domestic Drug Enforcement Strategy. To address issues related to 
ensuring FBI's compliance with the Attorney General's Guidelines, we 
also met with officials from FBI and DOJ and several private sector 
groups interested in civil liberties issues.[Footnote 6] We did our 
work between September 2002 and June 2003 in accordance with generally 
accepted government auditing standards.

FBI Efforts Part of Broader Transformation Efforts:

Last June, I highlighted the importance of the FBI's success in 
transforming itself, noting several basic aspects of a successful 
transformation as well as the need for broader government 
transformation. Today, the importance of the FBI's transformation has 
not diminished. The FBI continues to stand at the forefront of our 
domestic intelligence efforts to defend the public from the threat of 
terrorism, while still maintaining responsibility for investigations of 
other threats to our public safety such as those from drugs, violent 
crime, public corruption, and crimes against children. As I pointed out 
last June, any changes at the FBI must be part of, and consistent with, 
broader governmentwide transformation efforts that are taking place, 
especially those resulting from the establishment of the Department of 
Homeland Security and in connection with the intelligence community.

To effectively meet the challenges of the post-September 11, 2001, 
environment, the FBI needs to consider employing key practices that 
have consistently been found at the center of successful transformation 
efforts.[Footnote 7] These key practices are to:

* ensure that top leadership drives the transformation;

* establish a coherent mission and integrated strategic goals;

* focus on a key set of principles and priorities;

* set implementation goals and a timeline;

* dedicate an implementation team to manage the process;

* use a performance management system to define responsibility and 
establish accountability;

* establish a communication strategy;

* involve employees; and:

* build a world class organization that continually seeks to implement 
best practices.

Strategic human capital management is the centerpiece of any change 
management initiative, including any agency transformation effort. Thus 
far, we are encouraged by the progress that the FBI has made in some 
areas in the year since the announcement of phase II of its 
reorganization. Specifically, the commitment of Director Mueller and 
senior level leadership to the FBI's reorganization; the FBI's 
communication of priorities; and the FBI's efforts to realign its 
activities, processes, and resources warrant recognition. However, a 
comprehensive transformation plan with key milestones and assessment 
points to guide its overall transformation effort is still needed.

In addition, as I testified last June, the FBI can and should reinforce 
its transformation efforts through its performance management system by 
aligning unit, team, and individual employee performance expectations 
with planned agency goals and objectives. High-performing organizations 
create a clear linkage--"line of sight"--between individual performance 
and organizational success and thus transform their cultures to be more 
results-oriented, customer-focused, and collaborative in 
nature.[Footnote 8] This alignment will help FBI employees see the 
connection between their daily activities and the Bureau's success. The 
FBI may already show some indication that its agents see how their work 
relates to agency priorities. Eighty-five percent of the special agents 
and 31 of the 34 analysts who completed our questionnaire in the 14 FBI 
field offices we visited generally or strongly agreed that their daily 
activities have been consistent with the FBI's top priorities.

Coupled with this alignment is the need for a performance management 
system that makes meaningful distinctions in performance. The FBI 
currently uses a pass/fail system to rate its employees' performance. 
This type of system does not provide enough meaningful information and 
dispersion in ratings to recognize and reward top performers, help 
everyone attain their maximum potential, and deal with poor performers. 
As a result, the FBI needs to review and revise its performance 
management system to be in line with revisions to its strategic plan, 
including desired outcomes, core values, critical individual 
competencies, and agency transformational objectives.

FBI Strategic Planning Efforts Underway, but Revised Strategic Plan Not 
Completed:

Although a strategic plan is vital to an organization's transformation 
effort, the FBI has not completed the update to its strategic plan. At 
the same time, it has made some progress in its strategic planning 
efforts. Specifically, the FBI's Office of Strategic Planning has 
developed a framework for a revised strategic plan. The operational 
divisions have made some progress in completing their program plans--
the Bureau's building blocks, in addition to the FBI's top 10 
priorities, for completing a strategic plan. Furthermore, information 
about the progress of the strategic planning process seems to have been 
disseminated. Both field office managers and field staff we spoke with 
generally reported being afforded the opportunity to provide input. 
Director Mueller, through leadership and management conferences, 
electronic communications, visits to field offices, messages on the 
FBI's intranet, public statements, and press releases, has communicated 
the FBI's top priorities. Additionally, the FBI, through a strategic 
planning reengineering project,[Footnote 9] is developing a revised 
strategic management process to better align the planning and budget 
processes with strategic priorities in the future.

The Office of Strategic Planning has developed a framework for the 
revised strategic plan, and the operational divisions were provided 
guidance to develop their program plans.[Footnote 10] According to the 
FBI, the Counterintelligence and Cyber program plans have been 
completed, presented to FBI executive management, and approved. The 
Office of Strategic Planning is in the process of incorporating them 
into the revised strategic plan. As of June 2003, the Counterterrorism 
and Criminal Investigative Divisions' program plans[Footnote 11] were 
in the final stages of development. FBI officials indicated that the 
implementation of two staff reprogrammings and delays in the 
appropriation of its fiscal year 2003 budget, as well as the war in 
Iraq, delayed the completion of these program plans. FBI officials 
estimate that a new strategic plan should be completed by the start of 
fiscal year 2004. It is unclear, however, whether the FBI will achieve 
this milestone, and because the plan has not been completed we cannot 
comment on the quality of its contents.

As noted earlier, employee involvement in strategic planning, and 
transformation in general, is a key practice of a successful agency as 
it transforms. FBI executive management seems to have recognized this. 
Based on our discussions with program officials in FBI headquarters and 
visits to FBI field offices, field management in the 14 field offices 
we visited reported that they had been afforded opportunities to 
provide input into the FBI's strategic planning process. In addition, 
68 percent of the special agents and 24 of the 34 analysts who 
completed our questionnaire reported that they had been afforded the 
opportunity to provide input to FBI management regarding FBI 
strategies, goals, and priorities, by among others, participating in 
focus groups or meetings, and assisting in the development of the field 
offices' annual report. FBI managers in the field offices we visited 
and 87 percent of the special agents and 31 of the 34 analysts who 
completed our questionnaire indicated that FBI management had kept them 
informed of the FBI's progress in revising its strategic plan to 
reflect changed priorities.

FBI management seems to also have been effective in communicating the 
agency's top 3 priorities (i.e., counterterrorism, 
counterintelligence, and cyber crime investigations) to the staff. In 
addition to the awareness of management staff in FBI headquarters and 
field offices, nearly all of the special agents and all of the analysts 
who answered our questionnaire indicated that FBI executive management 
(i.e., Director Mueller and Deputy Director Gebhardt) had communicated 
the FBI's priorities to their field offices. Management and most of the 
agents we interviewed in the field were aware of the FBI's top 3 
priorities.[Footnote 12] Further, over 90 percent of special agents and 
28 of the 34 analysts who completed our questionnaire generally or 
strongly agreed that their field office had made progress in realigning 
its goals to be consistent with the FBI's transformation efforts and 
new priorities.

Completion of a revised strategic plan is essential to guide the 
decision making in the FBI's transformation. The Director has set the 
priorities and they have been communicated; however, it is vital that 
the FBI place a priority on the completion of a new and formal 
strategic plan, as it is a key first step in transformation.

FBI's Progress in Developing a Strategic Human Capital Plan:

In my statement last June, I highlighted the importance of the 
development of a strategic human capital plan to the FBI's 
transformation efforts. A strategic human capital plan should flow from 
the strategic plan and guide an agency to align its workforce needs, 
goals, and objectives with its mission-critical functions. Human 
capital planning should include both integrating human capital 
approaches in the development of the organizational plans and aligning 
the human capital programs with the program goals. The FBI has not 
completed a strategic human capital plan, but has taken some steps to 
address short-term human capital needs related to implementing its 
changed priorities, as well as made progress, through a variety of 
initiatives, to begin to link human capital needs with the FBI's 
strategic needs.[Footnote 13] The FBI should continue to build a long-
term strategic human capital approach, including maximizing use of 
human capital flexibilities,[Footnote 14] to identify future critical 
needs and to attract, retain, and develop individuals with these 
skills.

The FBI has taken actions to address human capital concerns related to 
implementing its changed priorities. These include (1) initiating 
several reengineering projects on human capital issues, such as 
succession planning, enhancing the FBI's communication strategy and 
streamlining its hiring process; (2) initiating the staffing of the 
Office of Intelligence, a key component of building the FBI's 
intelligence mission; (3) realigning agents and support staff to 
counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber crime investigations 
to address priority areas; and (4) implementing plans to enhance 
recruitment and hiring for critical skill needs and training staff 
shifted to priority areas to address the change in the FBI's 
priorities. This statement further addresses the FBI's progress in 
realigning staff resources to priority areas and efforts to enhance 
recruitment, hiring and training of personnel in the sections that 
follow.

Additional efforts underway within the FBI to address future human 
capital needs include, among others:

* Administrative Services Division actions to recruit personnel with 
critical skills, as identified by the Counterterrorism, 
Counterintelligence, and Cyber Divisions to support their priority 
missions.

* Steps to identify key staff competencies and establish comprehensive 
career programs for all occupational groups in the FBI and plans to 
link these competencies to training and developmental needs.

* In support of the FBI's intelligence mission, the creation of two new 
intelligence analyst positions, the reclassification of a third 
position, and plans to establish career paths for these positions.

* Re-engineering the Training Division's mission and operations 
intended to meet the present and future training needs of the FBI 
workforce.

In building a long-term approach, the FBI may want to focus on 
identified aspects of successful human capital management systems, such 
as utilizing existing human capital flexibilities. While the FBI has 
made use of several human capital flexibilities, including work-life 
programs, such as alternative work schedules and transit subsidies; 
monetary recruitment and retention incentives, such as recruitment 
bonuses and retention allowances; and incentive awards for notable job 
performance and contributions, such as cash and time-off 
awards,[Footnote 15] it needs to fully maximize the use of available 
human capital flexibilities in recruiting agents with critical skills, 
intelligence analysts, and other critically needed staff. The use of 
such flexibilities should be based on a data-driven assessment of the 
FBI's specific needs and capabilities. Such an analysis should be 
outlined in the FBI's strategic human capital plan. After fully 
maximizing the use of its recruiting flexibilities, if they prove to be 
inadequate in helping the FBI meet its recruiting and retention goals, 
the FBI may then want to seek additional legislative 
authority.[Footnote 16]

Finally, as the FBI has yet to hire a Human Capital Officer to oversee 
these efforts, it is critical that this individual have the appropriate 
expertise in strategic human capital management, as well as the 
necessary resources to continue to develop and implement long-term 
strategic human capital initiatives. Options for which may include 
enhancing existing planning resources or contracting out these 
functions.

FBI Realigned Staff Resources to Address Priorities, but Some Major 
Challenges Continue:

A key element of the FBI's reorganization and successful transformation 
is the realignment of resources to better ensure focus on the highest 
priorities. Since September 11, 2001, the FBI has permanently realigned 
some of its field agent workforce from criminal investigative programs 
to work counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber programs. 
Additionally, over three-fourths of the new special agent positions in 
the FBI's fiscal year 2004 budget request are for the priority areas. 
However, despite these efforts, the FBI continues to face major 
challenges in critical staffing areas. Some of the more noteworthy 
challenges include (1) a continuing need to utilize special agent and 
staff resources from other criminal investigative programs to address 
counterterrorism workload, (2) lack of adequate analytical and 
technical assistance, and (3) lack of adequate administrative and 
clerical support personnel.

Staff Resources Realigned to Address Investigative Priorities:

As figure 1 shows, about 26 percent of the FBI's field agent positions 
were allocated to counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber 
crime programs prior to the FBI's change in priorities. Since that 
time, as a result of the staff reprogramming[Footnote 17] efforts and 
funding for additional special agent positions received through various 
appropriations, the FBI staffing levels allocated to the 
counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber program areas have 
increased to about 36 percent.

Figure 1: Increase in Allocation of FBI Field Agent Positions to 
Priority Areas:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

The FBI's staff reprogramming plans, carried out over the last 12 
months, have permanently shifted 674[Footnote 18] field agent positions 
(about 7.5 percent of the 8,881 field agent positions existing before 
the change to new priorities) from the drug, white-collar, and violent 
crime program areas to counterterrorism and counterintelligence. In 
addition, the FBI established the Cyber program, which consolidated 
existing cyber resources.[Footnote 19]

Despite the reprogramming of agent positions in fiscal year 2002 to 
counterterrorism and the additional agent positions received through 
various supplemental appropriations since September 11, 2001, agents 
from other program areas have also been continuously redirected to work 
temporarily on counterterrorism. This demonstrates a commitment on the 
part of the FBI to staff this priority area. The FBI has certain 
managerial flexibilities to temporarily redirect staff resources to 
address pressing needs and threats.

As figure 2 shows, the average number of field agent workyears[Footnote 
20] charged to investigating counterterrorism-related matters[Footnote 
21] has continually outpaced the number of agent positions allocated to 
field offices for counterterrorism since September 11, 2001. The FBI's 
current policy is that no counterterrorism leads will go unaddressed, 
resulting in a need for these shifts in resources. This policy results 
in substantial commitment of resources that may have to be reassessed 
in the future. As the FBI gains more experience and continues assessing 
risk in a post September 11, 2001, environment, it will gain more 
expertise in deciding which matters warrant investigation and the 
investment of staff resources. To better manage the investment of its 
staff resources in the future, the FBI should systematically analyzing 
the nature of leads and the output of their efforts. This will enable 
the FBI to better pinpoint how best to invest staff resources based on 
value/risk and overall resource considerations in the future.

Figure 2: Comparative Analyses of FBI Field Agent Non-Supervisory 
Positions Allocated and Agent Workyears Charged to Counterterrorism 
Matters:

[See PDF for image]

Note: The Time Utilization and Recordkeeping (TURK) system is used by 
the FBI to record the proportion of time spent by field agents on 
various types of investigative matters such as organized crime, white-
collar crime, and counterterrorism. The FBI uses the TURK system to 
track and project the use of field resources. Data derived from the 
TURK system are only as valid as the information reported by FBI field 
agents.

[End of figure]

Use of field agent staff resources for three of the four other programs 
we included in our review (i.e., drug enforcement, violent crime, and 
white collar crime) were below their allocated staffing levels. 
Appendix I provides comparative analyses of field agent positions 
allocated to field offices for these other criminal programs and the 
average number of field agent workyears charged to investigating these 
matters.

Last year, we testified that neither the FBI nor we were in a position 
to determine the right amount of staff resources needed to address the 
priority areas. Since that time, the FBI has completed a 
counterterrorism threat assessment and has had some experience in 
staffing priority work in a post-September 11, 2001, environment. This, 
along with an analysis of the nature of leads and the output from them, 
may put the Bureau in a better situation to assess the actual levels of 
need in counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber programs.

Counterterrorism Matters Have Increased:

The level of effort in counterterrorism is further reflected in the 
number of counterterrorism matters that have been opened following 
September 11, 2001. As figure 3 shows, the number of newly opened 
counterterrorism matters has increased substantially.

Figure 3: Number of Counterterrorism Matters Newly Opened, Fiscal Years 
2001 through Second Quarter Fiscal Year 2003:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

FBI Field Offices Lack Adequate Support Personnel:

Previous internal and external studies of the FBI and our recent visits 
to 14 FBI field offices have identified a lack of adequate support 
personnel. Among the critical support personnel needs identified were 
intelligence analysts, foreign language specialists, computer 
engineering and technical specialists, and administrative and clerical 
support.[Footnote 22] Based on information obtained during our site 
visits to FBI field offices and discussions with officials in the FBI 
headquarters, there continues to be challenges associated with meeting 
resource needs in these areas.

During our site visits, both management officials and field agents 
indicated that inadequate numbers of intelligence analysts and foreign 
language specialists resulted in delays to investigative work. 
Specifically, 70 percent of the agents and 29 of the 34 analysts who 
completed our questionnaire responded that the staffing level of 
intelligence analysts was less than adequate given their office's 
current workload and priorities. As a result, many agents said they 
spend time performing their own intelligence analysis work.

FBI officials also expressed a need for more foreign language 
specialists largely due to an increase in translation needs, for 
instance, translating documents and electronic surveillance 
recordings. Fifty-four percent of the agents and 17 of the 32 analysts 
who completed our questionnaire indicated that the staffing level of 
foreign language specialists was less than adequate given their 
office's current workload and priorities.

Also, agents expressed a need for additional computer and technical 
specialists. Fifty three percent of the agents and 21 of the 34 
analysts who completed our questionnaire indicated that staffing level 
of computer and technical support was less than adequate given their 
office's current workload and priorities. Agents reported that they 
sometimes have to wait for several days to get computer hardware 
support when needed. Additionally, managers and agents in the field 
offices said that their field office lacked adequate access to staff 
who could assist in the search and seizure of computer evidence as well 
as provide forensic examination of computers.

Lastly, FBI management and special agents with whom we met indicated 
that the staffing level of administrative and clerical support 
personnel was inadequate and that this adversely affected the 
efficiency of their investigative activities. Over 60 percent of the 
agents and 18 of the 34 analysts who completed our questionnaire 
indicated that the level was less than adequate given their office's 
current workload and priorities. According to FBI field office 
officials, it was not uncommon for management, agents, and analysts to 
take on many of the administrative support functions, such as answering 
telephones and entering data, in addition to their other 
responsibilities.

Reallocation of FBI Resources Affects DOJ's Drug Enforcement Efforts:

Last year at this time the FBI announced that, in keeping with its new 
priorities, it would move 400 field agent positions from its drug 
program to counterterrorism.[Footnote 23] Indeed, the FBI has 
transferred even more agent positions than it originally announced and 
has augmented those agents with the short-term assignment of additional 
field agents from drug and other law enforcement areas to work on 
counterterrorism. As would be expected, the number of newly opened drug 
cases has fallen in relation to the decline in the number of field 
agent positions allocated to drug enforcement. Additionally, according 
to the FBI and DOJ's recent domestic drug enforcement strategy, the 
FBI's, as well as DEA's, drug enforcement efforts will primarily focus 
on targeting the most significant high-level drug trafficking 
organizations leaving some other lower-level drug enforcement 
activities (e.g., street sweeps) to state and local entities.[Footnote 
24] It is unclear the extent to which state and local law enforcement 
agencies can sustain or enhance their drug enforcement efforts given 
that they also have added homeland security responsibilities and face 
their own fiscal challenges.

Nearly Half of the FBI Field Agent Drug Positions Have Been Reallocated 
to Priority Program Areas:

Since September 11, 2001, about 40 percent of the positions allocated 
to FBI field offices' drug program have been reallocated to 
counterterrorism and counterintelligence priority areas. As figure 4 
shows, just prior to September 11, 2001, about two-thirds (or 890) of 
the 1,378 special agent positions allocated to FBI field offices for 
drug program matters were direct-funded.[Footnote 25] The remaining 
one-third (or 488) of the special agent positions was funded by the 
Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force program (OCDETF). As of 
the second quarter of fiscal year 2003, the number of direct-funded 
positions allocated to FBI field offices for the drug program had 
decreased over 60 percent, going from 890 to 335. OCDETF-funded agent 
positions, which have remained constant, now account for about 60 
percent of the FBI field offices' drug program staff resources. 
Consistent with Director Mueller's commitment, the FBI has not reduced 
the number of agents in the OCDETF program.

Figure 4: Number of Special Agent Positions Allocated to FBI Field 
Offices for Drug Work Since September 11, 2001:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

While this reduction represents a substantial decline in the number of 
field agent positions allocated to drug work, in fact, the reduction in 
drug enforcement workyears was actually larger than these figures 
reflect. Specifically, as needs arose for additional agents to work 
counterterrorism leads, field agents assigned to drug program squads 
were temporarily reassigned to the priority work. As figure 5 shows, at 
the extreme, during the first quarter of fiscal year 2002 (just after 
the events of September 11, 2001), while 1,378 special agent positions 
were allocated to drug work only about half of these staff resources 
worked in the drug program area. During fiscal year 2003, the allocated 
number of drug agent positions and the average number of field agent 
workyears charged to drug matters start to converge to the new targeted 
levels.

Figure 5: Comparative Analyses of FBI Field Agent Non-Supervisory 
Positions Allocated and Agent Workyears Charged to Investigating Drug 
Program Matters:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

The reduction in drug enforcement resources has reduced the number of 
drug squads in FBI field offices, according to FBI officials. The 
number of FBI agents supporting the High-Intensity Drug Trafficking 
Area (HIDTA) program initiatives has also been reduced, according to 
FBI officials.[Footnote 26]

The significant reduction in agent-strength in the drug enforcement 
area may be an important factor in the smaller number of drug matters 
opened in the first two quarters of fiscal year 2003. As figure 6 
shows, the number of newly opened drug matters went from 1,825 in 
fiscal year 2000 to 944 in fiscal year 2002 and to 310 in the first 
half of fiscal year 2003, indicating a rate for the entire year that 
may be well below that of previous years.

Figure 6: Number of FBI Drug Matters Newly Opened, Fiscal Years 1998 
through Second Quarter Fiscal Year 2003:

[See PDF for image]

[A] This figure includes only the first two quarters of fiscal year 
2003.

[End of figure]

We want to make clear that we are in no way intending to fault the FBI 
for the reassignment of agents from drug enforcement to higher-priority 
areas. Indeed, these moves are directly in line with their priorities 
and in keeping with the paramount need to prevent terrorism.

DEA Is Taking Steps to Fill Some of the Drug Enforcement Gap:

The DEA, the lead federal drug enforcement agency, has taken a slightly 
larger role in domestic drug enforcement through increasing its 
participation in interagency drug enforcement activities. For example, 
in fiscal year 2002, DEA began shifting 34 agent positions from 
headquarters and various field divisions to support the southwest 
border--a region that has experienced a significant reduction in FBI 
special agent positions. During the same period, the DEA also increased 
its authorized staffing level for HIDTA programs by 13 special agent 
positions. For fiscal year 2003, DEA received a budget enhancement that 
will fund an additional 216 special agent positions, to among other 
things, strengthen its financial investigations and increase its 
participation in OCDETF. For fiscal year 2004, DEA has requested an 
enhancement to fund 233 additional agent positions, plus the 
reassignment of 293 special agent positions from their Mobile 
Enforcement Team (MET) and Regional Enforcement Team (RET) to 
investigate priority drug trafficking organizations. Overall, in terms 
of combined DEA and FBI drug agent positions, DEA enhancements 
(received and planned) will fill some, but not all, of the drug program 
personnel gap left by the reassignment of FBI drug program agents to 
higher-priority work.

New Domestic Drug Enforcement Strategy Focuses at High-Level Activity:

According to the April 2003 Department of Justice Domestic Drug 
Enforcement Strategy, DOJ's drug enforcement effort, consistent with 
the OCDETF initiative, will center on investigations of the most 
significant international, national, regional, and local drug 
trafficking organizations. Specifically, it focuses drug enforcement 
efforts on disrupting or dismantling priority targets on its 
Consolidated Priority Organization Target list. The proposed movement 
of resources out of DEA's MET and RET program is consistent with this 
new strategy.

In July 2001, we issued a report concerning the management of the MET 
program.[Footnote 27] At that time we reported that, according to DEA, 
the MET program was needed because (1) state and local police agencies 
did not have sufficient resources to effectively enforce the drug laws 
and (2) local law enforcement personnel were known to local drug users 
and sellers, making undercover drug buys and penetration of local 
distribution rings difficult and dangerous. DEA reported about 16,000 
arrests as a result of MET deployments from its inception in fiscal 
year 1995 through the third quarter of fiscal year 2003.[Footnote 28] 
DEA also noted that about a quarter of its MET investigations involved 
either drug traffickers operating on a broader scale than the local 
jurisdiction of the deployment of international traffickers.

The overall reduction in combined FBI and DEA staffing of drug 
enforcement positions and the change in strategy removes some drug 
enforcement assistance from local jurisdictions at a time when many, if 
not most, state and local budgets are under intense pressure.[Footnote 
29] While this may in fact be the best use of scarce resources, drug 
crime data of many kinds should be monitored closely to assess the 
impact of these changes and ensure that we are using our resources to 
the best advantage.

FBI Has Made Progress in Recruitment and Hiring:

The FBI has made some progress in developing and implementing its 
recruitment strategies and in its efforts to hire special agents and 
support staff with critical skills. While fiscal year 2002 special 
agent hiring goals were met in terms of numbers, the FBI fell short of 
the desired critical skills mix. For support staff, hiring for that 
year was far lower than was targeted. For fiscal year 2003, as of May, 
the outlook is better for both special agents and some support staff 
skill areas. For special agents, only in the language skills area has 
hiring lagged below a pace needed to meet the goal. Support staff 
hiring seems on track to meet many, but not all, of their critical 
skill targets.

FBI Made Progress in Developing and Implementing Hiring Strategies for 
Special Agents:

As previously noted, in order to recruit staff to align with its needs 
and priorities after September 11, 2001, the FBI developed a National 
Special Agent Recruitment Plan for fiscal years 2002 and 2003. This 
plan established recruitment and hiring goals, identified critical 
skills the FBI is targeting, and established a timeline for achieving 
these goals. To implement its recruitment plan, in January 2002, the 
FBI began a hiring initiative aimed at recruiting applicants with 
skills and backgrounds identified as critical for new special agents. 
This includes a focus on skills in computer science, specific foreign 
languages, physical sciences and engineering, as well as experience in 
counterterrorism and counterintelligence. The FBI has set specific 
numerical targets for these skills to try to ensure that new agents as 
a group would be hired with the targeted mix of skills. To enhance the 
special agent applicant pool in certain critical skill areas, for 
example, the FBI established a Computer Science/Information Technology 
Special Entry Program.

FBI Is Meeting Special Agent Hiring Goals and Is Improving in Hiring 
Agents with Critical Skills:

The FBI was successful in meeting its overall hiring goals for special 
agents during fiscal year 2002. During that year, the FBI hired 923 
agents of the 927 planned. The FBI, however, was less successful in 
hiring the special agents, who as a group possessed the mix of critical 
skills specified under the fiscal year 2002 hiring initiative. The 
timing of this hiring process may have been a factor in not achieving 
the targeted skill mix during this year. The FBI announced its critical 
skill goals approximately 4 months after September 11, 2001, and at the 
end of a 2-year hiring freeze.[Footnote 30] In order to hire special 
agents quickly, in the months following September 11, 2001, the FBI had 
to rely on its existing applicant pool, which largely consisted of 
applicants with skills in accounting, law, and law enforcement. The 
available applicant pool also included applicants with foreign language 
skills, but not necessarily in the newly targeted languages.

During the first 8 months of fiscal year 2003, the FBI hired about 80 
percent (or 550) of the special agents it needs to meet its hiring goal 
of 663 agents. In all of its identified critical skill areas, except 
agents with foreign language skills, the FBI is on track to reach its 
stated hiring goals, and in some areas has exceeded its goals. Appendix 
II contains additional information concerning the FBI's fiscal year 
2002 and 2003 hiring.

It is important to note that the FBI hiring process for special agents 
has been shortened considerably. While still lengthy, it is down to a 
minimum of about 8 months from application submission to final 
processing, from 13 months several years ago. Appendix III includes a 
graphic presentation of the steps in the hiring process and the time 
associated with each step. Once new agents are hired, they are sent to 
17 weeks of new agent training at the FBI Academy in Quantico, 
Virginia, followed by a 2-year probationary period during which time 
special agents receive developmental supervision and on-the-job 
training. We note this to make the point that it will take time to 
build up agent strength within the Bureau.

Support Staff Hiring Goals Not Met in 2002, but 2003 Shows Some 
Improvements:

About 60 percent of the FBI's workforce is represented by support 
staff, which consists of analysts (e.g., intelligence and financial), 
scientists, technical specialists, administrative support, laborers, 
and other nonagent personnel. In fiscal year 2002, the FBI did not meet 
its overall goal for hiring support staff, filling only 643 (44 
percent) of 1,465 positions. The initial goal for hiring support staff 
in fiscal year 2003 was set at about 2,000. However, the goal has been 
revised downward during the year to reflect attrition rates that were 
lower than anticipated, somewhat smaller enhancements for support staff 
than were anticipated, and a reevaluation of their overall budget 
situation.[Footnote 31] The capacity of the FBI to process new support 
staff applications was approximately 1,500 applications per year, 
according to FBI officials. The current target for support staff hiring 
is set at 1,023. As of May 2003, the FBI has hired 565 support staff, 
about 55 percent of the goal as compared to 80 percent of its special 
agent goal.

The FBI does not set hiring goals for all types of support staff but 
only for those that are deemed critical. Table 1 shows fiscal year 2003 
hiring goals for selected support staff positions. As the table shows, 
the FBI is doing well in hiring for some critical areas but is lagging 
in others.

Table 1: FBI Support Staff Hiring for Some Critical Areas:

Critical support positions: Field investigative support; FY2003: hiring 
goal: 60; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 2[A]; Percent of goal: 3.

Critical support positions: Scientist/forensic/HAZMAT; FY2003: hiring 
goal: 17; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 37; Percent of goal: 218.

Critical support positions: Electronic technician/electronic 
engineers; FY2003: hiring goal: 33; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 37; 
Percent of goal: 112.

Critical support positions: Information technology specialists; 
FY2003: hiring goal: 44; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 45; Percent of 
goal: 102.

Critical support positions: Intelligence analysts, research 
specialists, and operations specialists; FY2003: hiring goal: 126; 
FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 115; Percent of goal: 91.

Critical support positions: Language specialists; FY2003: hiring goal: 
45; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 20[B]; Percent of goal: 44.

Critical support positions: Special surveillance groups/lookout; 
FY2003: hiring goal: 180; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 53; Percent of 
goal: 29.

Critical support positions: Security specialists; FY2003: hiring goal: 
110; FY2003 actual (as of 5/6/03): 0; Percent of goal: 0.

Source: GAO analysis of FBI data.

[A] Nineteen positions were filled with on-board employees.

[B] The FBI plans to fill the remaining 25 positions with existing 
contract linguists.

[End of table]

Consistent with Director Mueller's plans to enhance its intelligence 
program, the FBI has, as noted earlier, redefined and revised 
intelligence-related analyst positions and has made some progress in 
hiring intelligence analysts. In fiscal year 2002, the FBI did not 
specify hiring goals in the intelligence area; however, in fiscal year 
2003, the FBI identified intelligence analysts as a priority hiring 
category. As of May 2003, the FBI has hired 115 new analysts in the 
intelligence area--including intelligence analysts, intelligence 
operations specialists, and intelligence research specialists. On the 
basis of its revised fiscal year 2003 target--to hire 126 analysts in 
this area--the FBI is well on the way to reaching its target.

While still short of meeting its foreign language critical skill 
targets, the FBI has been able to bolster its foreign language capacity 
by increasing the number of contract linguists and language 
specialists. Before September 11, 2001, there were 405 contract 
linguists and 379 language specialists, and as of May 2003, there were 
712 contract linguists and 421 language specialists. In the priority 
languages identified to support the FBI's new priorities, 195 contract 
linguists and 44 language specialists were hired between October 2002 
and March 2003.

Through our field visits, two other areas in which agents and managers 
indicated that there were support staff challenges were information 
technology and administrative support. For fiscal year 2003, the FBI 
plans on hiring 44 information technology staff and 211 administrative 
staff. As of May 2003, the FBI hired 45 information technology and 94 
administrative personnel--exceeding its goal for information 
technology and hiring about 45 percent of its goal for administrative 
personnel.

FBI's Training Program Revamped to Address Priority Areas:

In addition to hiring new employees with critical skills, the FBI's 
reorganization plans called for revisions to the FBI's training 
program. Over the past 12 months, the FBI has improved its ability to 
train its workforce and to address priority areas. Encouraging steps 
taken by the FBI include: (1) efforts to provide revised training to 
new agents and agents assigned to work in priority areas;[Footnote 32] 
(2) progress establishing the College of Analytical Studies to train 
analysts; and (3) plans to reengineer its overall training program to 
better meet the long-term training needs of the Bureau's workforce.

Agents Provided Revised Training in Priority Areas:

In January 2003, in an effort to focus on the delivery of training to 
agents and analysts reassigned to work in the priority areas, the FBI 
cancelled most of its training for on-board staff that was not focused 
on counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber crime 
investigations. This allowed the FBI to shift resources to develop 
training for new agents and those agents who were moved to work in 
counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and cyber matters. For example, 
the FBI Training Division revised existing new agent coursework to 
focus on the priority areas and developed new courses for agents who 
were assigned to counterterrorism and counterintelligence. Agents 
assigned to the newly established Cyber Division are required to 
complete basic coursework on cyber crime investigations and are 
encouraged to complete a core curriculum consisting of eight classes, 
including technical coursework as well as cyber investigative 
techniques.

As of April 2003, all new agents are to receive revised training in the 
priority areas. In addition, as of May 2003, 545 of all agents assigned 
to work on counterterrorism and counterintelligence investigations have 
received revised training in these areas.[Footnote 33] Those agents who 
have been designated by the Counterterrorism and Counterintelligence 
Divisions as needing revised training will have completed the required 
training by the end of the 2003 calendar year, according to FBI 
officials. We did not evaluate the curriculum of the revised training 
courses. Appendix IV provides additional details about the FBI's 
allocation of $10 million provided in the House Conference 
Report[Footnote 34] accompanying the fiscal year 2003 budget revisions 
to the FBI's training in priority areas.

College of Analytical Studies in Place to Build Analysts Skills:

To further enhance analysts' skills and abilities,[Footnote 35] the FBI 
created the College of Analytical Studies at its Quantico training 
facility in October 2001. The College of Analytical Studies provides 
training to new and in-service analysts in tools and techniques for 
both strategic and technical analysis.[Footnote 36] Completion of basic 
analytical coursework is required of new analysts, while advanced 
analytical coursework is offered to experienced analysts. The College 
of Analytical Studies trained 193 analysts in fiscal year 2002 and is 
scheduled to train an additional 1,032 analysts in fiscal year 
2003.[Footnote 37] Additionally, the FBI is continuing to identify and 
schedule additional analysts from the priority areas who should receive 
analytical training, according to FBI officials. As with the revised 
agent training, we did not evaluate the content of the curriculum 
offered by the College of Analytical Studies. FBI officials told us 
that after each training course students are asked to provide feedback, 
which may be used to revise coursework. We did not evaluate this 
feedback.

Additionally, the FBI's Office of Intelligence has been tasked to 
develop all policies, including education requirements, with regard to 
analysts working in the intelligence area. The Office of Intelligence 
intends to work with the College of Analytical Studies to ensure that 
appropriate analytical training has been provided, according to FBI 
officials. The FBI is also pursuing accreditation for its College of 
Analytical Studies.

The FBI continues to work with other federal agencies to improve their 
analytical capabilities. For example, the FBI is currently working with 
the Joint Military Intelligence College to allow a select number of FBI 
personnel with intelligence backgrounds to earn a Master of Science in 
Strategic Intelligence. FBI officials anticipate that the program will 
begin accepting applications from interested FBI personnel by the end 
of fiscal year 2003, for consideration by FBI executives and final 
acceptance by the Joint Military Intelligence College for classes in 
fiscal year 2004.

Reengineering of Training Program Underway to Address Long-Term Needs:

To better address the longer-term training needs of its entire 
workforce, the FBI is implementing a plan to restructure its training 
programs. In March 2003, Director Mueller approved a series of 
proposals contained in a reengineering project addressing FBI training 
activities, which included a goal of establishing an Office of Training 
and Development. This office, among other duties, would assess the 
career-long training needs of all employees, standardize training, and 
centralize the tracking of staff progress through the curriculum. The 
training reengineering plan calls for the Assistant Director of 
Training to function as the chief learning officer and to oversee both 
the Office of Training and Development and the FBI Academy. The FBI 
Academy will continue its primary mission of training new agents, as 
well as operating the College of Analytical Studies. While the FBI, in 
announcing its training reengineering plan, acknowledges the long-term 
benefits of enhancing training as an investment in human capital, it is 
too soon to tell how effective the plan will be in improving 
performance. And, as the overall human capital plan for the agency 
develops there will be a need to revise and enhance training plans. 
Appendix IV also provides additional details on the FBI's training 
reengineering plan.

Implementation of the Revised Attorney General's Guidelines:

The revised Attorney General's Guidelines on General Crimes, 
Racketeering Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations (the 
"Guidelines") are intended to provide the FBI greater investigative 
flexibility to enhance its ability to detect and prevent terrorist acts 
and other federal crimes. As traditional investigative constraints are 
eased, however, appropriate internal controls are needed to prevent 
investigative abuses and ensure the protection of civil liberties. The 
Guidelines themselves contain internal controls regarding specific 
investigative procedures and prohibited activities, and the FBI and DOJ 
have other internal control mechanisms in place to help ensure agents 
do not go beyond their stated authorities. Although private sector 
groups we interviewed have expressed concern regarding issuance of the 
new Guidelines, neither we nor they have identified any reported 
allegations or investigations of abuses under the new Guidelines 
authorities.

It should be noted that federal officials, including the FBI, have also 
received additional investigative authorities from laws such as the USA 
PATRIOT Act, and that FBI activities are also prescribed by various 
other Attorney General guidelines. Our review focused on certain 
provisions of the Attorney General's Guidelines on General Crimes, 
Racketeering Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations. Among 
other things, the revised Guidelines permit FBI agents to be more 
proactive by allowing certain investigative activities--such as 
visiting public places and events or conducting online searches--to be 
conducted outside the context of an investigation. We did not focus on 
internal controls associated with other statutes and guidelines 
relevant to FBI investigations. For example, we did not focus on the 
type of alleged abuses recently reported by the DOJ's Office of the 
Inspector General (OIG) in June 2003 concerning the detention of 762 
aliens who had been held in connection with the FBI terrorism 
investigations. Appendix V provides a brief overview of a few selected 
statutes and guidelines relevant to FBI investigations that were not a 
part of our analysis.

Revised Guidelines Allow FBI More Investigative Flexibility:

Following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United 
States, the Attorney General ordered a review of all investigative 
procedures related to national security and criminal matters in an 
effort to eliminate unnecessary investigative constraints and help 
prevent terrorism. As a result, in May 2002, the Attorney General 
issued a revised set of FBI domestic investigative guidelines--The 
Attorney General's Guidelines on General Crimes, Racketeering 
Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations--intended to 
provide consistent policy direction so that FBI investigations are 
confined to matters of legitimate law enforcement interest and protect 
individual rights, while also providing new investigative flexibility. 
The Guidelines also delegate the authority to initiate and approve 
certain types of investigations from FBI headquarters to FBI field 
offices. Appendix VI presents more details on selected key changes in 
the Guidelines.

Internal Controls Are Intended to Protect against FBI Noncompliance 
With the Guidelines:

As we pointed out a year ago, the FBI should have appropriate internal 
controls in place to ensure that the new authorities permitted under 
the revised Guidelines are carried out in a manner that protects 
individual civil liberties. Internal controls serve as the first line 
of defense in preventing and detecting errors, and they provide an 
organization's management with reasonable assurance of compliance with 
applicable laws and regulations. Thus, internal controls are a key 
component for ensuring that these new authorities are implemented in a 
manner that protects civil liberties. Under federal internal control 
standards,[Footnote 38] a variety of internal control mechanisms--
including training, supervision, and monitoring--may be used by 
agencies to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

The Guidelines themselves are an internal control, establishing 
standards and requirements governing the FBI's investigative authority. 
In addition, the FBI has the following additional internal controls in 
place to help ensure compliance with the Guidelines and prevent agents 
from going beyond the authorities granted in the Guidelines:[Footnote 
39] (1) policies and procedures, which communicate to agents in detail 
the levels of authority and permissible activities; (2) training, which 
addresses civil liberties issues so that agents understand the 
limitations of their authority; and (3) supervision, which monitors 
agents' use of the new authorities. Finally, the FBI and DOJ have other 
internal control mechanisms in place to monitor FBI programs and 
personnel, as well as to identify and address alleged incidents of 
agent misconduct or abuse of civil liberties--specifically the FBI's 
internal inspection process and the investigation of allegations of 
abuse by the FBI 's Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) and 
DOJ's OIG. All of these mechanisms, of course, predate the revised 
Guidelines. To protect against civil liberties abuses in relation to 
the new investigative authorities allowed by the revisions, these 
controls must incorporate the revisions into their implementation.

Internal Controls Included in the Guidelines:

In reviewing the key changes in the revised Guidelines, we looked for 
evidence of internal controls in the document itself to help ensure 
compliance and protect against potential civil liberties abuses. In 
some cases, the Guidelines revisions include very specific internal 
controls intended to ensure compliance. For example, the changes 
relating to the process for conducting preliminary inquiries[Footnote 
40] and terrorism investigations specify criteria for authorizing the 
activity, who is authorized to approve the activity, how long the 
activity may remain initially authorized until reapproval is required, 
and what notifications of the activity are required within and outside 
the FBI. On the other hand, changes related to the new investigative 
authorities are not as specific in terms of controls to ensure 
compliance. For example:

* The FBI is now authorized to operate and participate in 
counterterrorism information systems (such as the Foreign Terrorist 
Tracking Task Force), and a periodic compliance review is required on 
any systems operated by the FBI. However, there is no indication of 
when such reviews should be conducted, what the review should entail 
(e.g., issues relating to access, use, or retention of data), and 
whether any reviews are required if the systems are not operated by the 
FBI.

* The FBI is now authorized to visit public places or events, but 
retention of information from these visits is prohibited unless it 
relates to potential criminal or terrorist activity. However, there is 
no indication of whether or how agents are to document the activity, 
how supervisors are to ensure that the purpose of the activity is 
detecting or preventing terrorism, and how compliance with the 
prohibition on maintaining information is to be verified.

FBI and DOJ Internal Controls in Place:

To implement the Guidelines themselves, the FBI and DOJ have other 
internal control mechanisms in place to help ensure FBI compliance with 
the Guidelines and help protect against potential abuses of individual 
civil liberties. Specifically:

* Policies and procedures - The FBI's policies and procedures manuals 
provide agents with additional guidance on conducting investigations. 
About 75 percent of the field agents who completed our questionnaire 
considered themselves to be at least somewhat familiar with the 
Guidelines. These agents indicated their familiarity came from a 
variety of sources, including a hard copy version of the Guidelines, 
the FBI's intranet Web site, electronic communications and briefings 
from FBI management, FBI program division or field office training, and 
supervisory on-the-job training. Additionally, the FBI is in the 
process of updating its Manual of Investigative Operations and 
Guidelines (MIOG) policies and procedures manuals to provide agents 
with additional guidance on implementation of the Guidelines.

* Training - Training on the Guidelines is included in all new agent 
training provided at the FBI Academy. Additional training and guidance, 
coordinated through the FBI's Office of General Counsel and field 
office legal coordinators, was made available to on-board agents after 
the Guidelines were issued. As of April 2003, just over one-half (about 
55 percent) of the field agents who completed our questionnaire 
indicated they had received either formal or informal training on the 
Guidelines.

* Supervision - Supervisory agents are to perform periodic case file 
reviews on all cases being worked by their agents to, among other 
things, monitor the progress of cases and verify compliance with 
applicable policies and procedures, such as the Guidelines. As of April 
2003, nearly all the field agents who completed our questionnaire 
indicated that their supervisors performed case file reviews at least 
every 90 days--more often in some cases.

* Inspections - FBI inspectors are to verify agents' compliance with 
the Guidelines and other applicable policies and procedures by 
reviewing case files and supervisory case file reviews. In reviewing 
selected inspection reports completed since October 1999, we found 
evidence that such reviews were being performed. At the same time, we 
identified no findings in the inspection reports of noncompliance with 
or misuse of the new investigative authorities granted under the 
Guidelines.

* Allegations of abuse - Both the FBI's OPR and DOJ's OIG have the 
authority to investigate allegations of FBI misconduct; the OIG also 
reviews all incoming FBI allegations to ensure the appropriate 
investigative response. Between October 2000 and March 2003, OPR 
investigated 1,579 cases of alleged FBI misconduct. The OIG 
investigated another 85 cases of alleged misconduct and 35 cases of 
alleged civil rights abuses between July 2001 and February 2003. 
However, based on the descriptions of the alleged offenses, we found no 
allegations or investigations that appeared to involve noncompliance 
with or abuse of the new investigative authorities granted under the 
Guidelines. In June 2003, the OIG reported on allegations of 
mistreatment and abuse of aliens detained on immigration charges in the 
aftermath of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. These 
allegations did not relate to the FBI's use of investigative 
authorities under the revised Guidelines and, in fact, the vast 
majority of these aliens were detained before the Guidelines were 
issued.

No Reported Allegations or Investigations of Noncompliance with the New 
Guidelines Authorities:

When the revised Guidelines were issued, private sector groups raised 
concerns about what they saw as a relaxing of investigative controls 
over the FBI, which represented a potential threat to individual civil 
liberties. In particular, they noted that the revised Guidelines 
allowed the FBI to use its new investigative authorities even in the 
absence of any prior indication of criminal activity. However, the 
private sector officials we met with could not provide any specific 
examples of the FBI abusing the new authorities granted under the 
Guidelines. Rather, their concerns largely stemmed from the belief that 
granting the FBI broader investigative authorities ignores the lessons 
of past abuses and is unlikely to result in tangible gains to law 
enforcement.[Footnote 41] Officials from the FBI's OPR and DOJ's OIG 
told us they do not separately track allegations of noncompliance with 
the Guidelines; nor could they identify any specific cases that 
involved noncompliance with or abuse of the new investigative 
authorities granted under the Guidelines.

FBI headquarters officials indicated that the supervisory case file 
review process is the primary vehicle to ensure that agents comply with 
applicable policies and procedures--such as the Guidelines--and do not 
go beyond their stated authorities. Regarding the new authorities, FBI 
field office managers told us that the number of leads that require 
followup, plus the number of ongoing preliminary inquiries and 
investigations related to counterterrorism, have field agents fully 
engaged. This, according to FBI field office managers, does not afford 
agents time to visit public places and events or search the Internet 
absent a legitimate lead. A recent FBI informal survey of 45 of its 
field offices found that fewer than ten offices had conducted 
investigative activities at mosques since September 11, 2001. All but 
one of these visits was conducted pursuant to, or was related to, open 
preliminary inquiries or full investigations. Notwithstanding this, 
however, FBI headquarters officials are currently considering whether 
to require mandatory supervisory approval prior to allowing an agent to 
enter a public place or attend a public meeting.

Given the sensitivity of these issues and the FBI's history of 
investigative abuses, the FBI has been reaching out to communities to 
assure them that, despite the emphasis on counterterrorism, 
investigating civil rights abuses remains a high priority of the FBI. 
For example, FBI field offices have been contacting Muslim leaders for 
the purpose of establishing a dialogue and discussing procedures for 
alerting the FBI to civil rights abuses. In one field office we 
visited, discussions had recently been held with the Muslim community 
and its leaders covering topics related to homeland security, FBI 
employment, and community outreach. Throughout the FBI, over 500 such 
meetings occurred in the first 5 months after September 11, 2001. More 
recently, in February 2003, the FBI Director met with key leaders of 
national Arab-American, Muslim, and Sikh organizations to discuss the 
FBI's response to hate crimes and other civil rights issues.

The revised Guidelines are in their infancy in terms of implementation. 
While it is a good sign that we have not identified any reported 
allegations, investigations, or indications of abuse of the new 
investigative authorities, this is not a situation that should result 
in reduced vigilance on the part of DOJ or the Congress. Appendix VII 
presents more details about the internal controls discussed above.

Summary Observations:

We continue to be ready to assist this and other congressional 
committees in any oversight of the FBI's implementation of its 
transformation efforts. Based on our work, there are specific areas 
related to the transformation of the FBI that seem to warrant continued 
monitoring. These areas include (1) the FBI's completion and 
implementation of a revised strategic plan; (2) the FBI's progress in 
integrating a human capital approach consistent with its mission and 
goals; (3) the long term impact on state and local law enforcement 
agencies, and the public, of the FBI's shift of staff resources away 
from drug enforcement and other criminal programs; and (4) FBI agents' 
compliance with the new investigative authorities granted under the 
revised Attorney General's Guidelines.

In closing, I would like to thank the FBI Director, DEA Administrator, 
and their staff for their cooperation in providing documentation and 
scheduling meetings needed to conduct our work. Especially, I would 
like to note the cooperation and candidness of FBI officials--managers, 
agents, and analysts--during our site visits to 14 field office 
locations.

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee, this concludes my 
prepared statement. I would be pleased to answer any questions you and 
the Subcommittee members may have.

GAO Contacts and Staff Acknowledgments:

For further information about this statement, please contact Laurie E. 
Ekstrand, Director, Homeland Security and Justice Issues, on (202) 512-
8777 or at ekstrandl@gao.gov or Charles Michael Johnson, Assistant 
Director, Homeland Security and Justice, on (202) 512-7331 or at 
johnsoncm@gao.gov. For further information on governmentwide human 
capital or transformation issues, please contact J. Christopher Mihm, 
Director, Strategic Issues, on (202) 512-6806 or at mihmj@gao.gov. 
Major contributors to this testimony included David Alexander, Tida E. 
Barakat, Karen Burke, Chan My J. Battcher, Gary A. Bianchi, Nancy 
Briggs, Philip D. Caramia, Sue Conlon, Seth Dykes, Geoffrey Hamilton, 
Mary Catherine Hult, Lori Kmetz, E. Anne Laffoon, Ronald La Due Lake, 
Julio Luna, Jan Montgomery, Kay Muse, and Andrew O'Connell, Sarah E. 
Veale.

[End of section]

Appendix I: Comparative Analysis of FBI Field Agent Positions and Agent 
Workyears Charged to Investigating Other Matters:

As shown in figures 7 through 9, use of field agent workyears expended 
for the cyber crime, violent crime, and white-collar crime program 
areas were at or below their allocated staffing levels.[Footnote 42]

Figure 7: Comparative Analysis of FBI Field Agent Non-Supervisory 
Positions Allocated and Agent Workyears Charged to Investigating Cyber 
Crime Matters:

[See PDF for image]

[A] In March 2003, the FBI's special agent positions in this program 
area were reduced by 307 positions as a result of the transfer of the 
Key Asset Program to the Department of Homeland Security.

[End of figure]

Figure 8: Comparative Analysis of FBI Field Agent Non-Supervisory 
Positions Allocated and Agent Workyears Charged to Investigating 
Violent Crime Matters:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

Figure 9: Comparative Analysis of FBI Field Non-Supervisory Positions 
Allocated and Agent Workyears Charged to Investigating White-Collar 
Crime Matters:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

[End of section]

Appendix II: FBI Special Agent Critical Skill Hiring:

As shown in table 2, the FBI did not fully achieve its goal for the mix 
of critical skills for fiscal year 2002.

Table 2: FBI Success in Hiring Special Agents with Critical Skills in 
Fiscal Year 2002:

Critical skill: Law enforcement /military/law/other; Goal: Number: 232; 
Goal: Percent: 25; Actual: Number: 589; Actual: Percent: 64; 
Percent of goal: 254.

Critical skill: Computer science/information technology; Goal: Number: 
185; Goal: Percent: 20; Actual: Number: 66; Actual: Percent: 
7; Percent of goal: 36.

Critical skill: Foreign language proficiency; Goal: Number: 186; Goal: 
Percent: 20; Actual: Number: 48; Actual: Percent: 5; 
Percent of goal: 26.

Critical skill: Physical sciences; Goal: Number: 93; Goal: Percent: 10; 
Actual: Number: 72; Actual: Percent: 8; Percent of 
goal: 77.

Critical skill: Engineering; Goal: Number: 93; Goal: Percent: 10; 
Actual: Number: 68; Actual: Percent: 7; Percent of 
goal: 73.

Critical skill: Military intelligence experience; Goal: Number: 46; 
Goal: Percent: 5; Actual: Number: 26; Actual: Percent: 3; 
Percent of goal: 57.

Critical skill: Counterterrorism; Goal: Number: 46; Goal: Percent: 5; 
Actual: Number: 15; Actual: Percent: 2; Percent of 
goal: 33.

Critical skill: Foreign counterintelligence; Goal: Number: 46; Goal: 
Percent: 5; Actual: Number: 39; Actual: Percent: 4; 
Percent of goal: 85.

Critical skill: Total; Goal: Number: 927; Goal: Percent: 100; 
Actual: Number: 923; Actual: Percent: 100; 

Source: GAO analysis of FBI data.

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding.

[End of table]

In fiscal year 2003, as shown in table 3, in all of its identified 
critical skill areas, except agents with foreign language skills, the 
FBI has already achieved over half of its stated goals for those areas.

Table 3: FBI Success in Hiring Special Agents with Critical Skills in 
Fiscal Year 2003:

Critical skill: Law enforcement/military/law/other; Goal: Number: 165; 
Goal: Percent: 25; Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 184; Actual 
(as of 6/1/03): Percent: 33; Percent of goal: 112.

Critical skill: Computer science/information technology; Goal: Number: 
133; Goal: Percent: 20; Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 114; 
Actual (as of 6/1/03): Percent: 21; Percent of goal: 86.

Critical skill: Foreign language proficiency; Goal: Number: 133; Goal: 
Percent: 20; Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 45; Actual (as of 
6/1/03): Percent: 8; Percent of goal: 34.

Critical skill: Physical sciences; Goal: Number: 66; Goal: Percent: 10; 
Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 75; Actual (as of 6/1/03): 
Percent: 14; Percent of goal: 114.

Critical skill: Engineering; Goal: Number: 66; Goal: Percent: 10; 
Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 52; Actual (as of 6/1/03): 
Percent: 9; Percent of goal: 79.

Critical skill: Intelligence[A]; Goal: Number: 99; Goal: Percent: 15; 
Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 80; Actual (as of 6/1/03): 
Percent: 15; Percent of goal: 81.

Critical skill: Total; Goal: Number: 663; Goal: Percent: 100; 
Actual (as of 6/1/03): Number: 550; Actual (as of 6/1/03): Percent: 
100; Percent of goal: 83.

Source: GAO analysis of FBI data.

Note: Totals may not add due to rounding.

[A] In fiscal year 2003, the FBI combined military intelligence 
experience, counterterrorism, and foreign counterintelligence into the 
intelligence critical skill.

[End of table]

[End of section]

Appendix III: FBI Special Agent Hiring Process:

As shown in figure 10, the FBI reduced the minimum time it takes to 
hire a special agent from 379 days to 236 days.

Figure 10: FBI Hiring Process and Timeline for Special Agent Positions:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

[End of section]

Appendix IV: FBI's Training in the Priority Areas:

Additional Funding Provided to FBI Priority Area Programs:

The Conference report for the Department of Justice Appropriation Act, 
2003 (P.L. 108-7, 117 Stat. 49 (2003)) indicates that the Conferees 
provided $10 million above the FBI's budget request for training 
needs.[Footnote 43] Table 4 shows how the FBI plans to allocate these 
funds by program.

Table 4: FBI Workforce Training Requirements and Spending Plan for 
Priority Programs:

FBI training program: Cyber crime; Curriculum development: $215,275; 
Distance learning: $163,723; Courseware development: $71,758; 
University education program: 0; Classroom training expenses: $768,420; 
FBI Academy classroom upgrades: 0; Program total: $1,219,176.

FBI training program: Counter-terrorism; Curriculum development: 
1,065,719; Distance learning: 810,508; Courseware development: 
355,240; University education program: 0; Classroom training expenses: 
477,000; FBI Academy classroom upgrades: 0; Program total: 2,708,467.

FBI training program: Counter-intelligence; Curriculum development: 
532,860; Distance learning: 405,254; Courseware development: 177,620; 
University education program: 0; Classroom training expenses: 308,000; 
FBI Academy classroom upgrades: 0; Program total: 1,423,734.

FBI training program: Analytical training; Curriculum development: 
586,146; Distance learning: 445,779; Courseware development: 195,382; 
University education program: 0; Classroom training expenses: 265,000; 
FBI Academy classroom upgrades: 0; Program total: 1,492,307.

FBI training program: Other training; Curriculum development: 600,000; 
Distance learning: 456,316; Courseware development: 200,000; 
University education program: $300,000; Classroom training expenses: 0; 
FBI Academy classroom upgrades: $1,600,000; Program total: 3,156,316.

FBI training program: Total; Curriculum development: $3,000,000; 
Distance learning: $2,281,580; Courseware development: $1,000,000; 
University education program: $300,000; Classroom training expenses: 
$1,818,420; FBI Academy classroom upgrades: $1,600,000; Program total: 
$10,000,000.

Source: FBI.

[End of table]

Revisions to the FBI's Training Programs in Priority Areas:

The FBI has taken steps to provide revised training to FBI personnel 
assigned to the priority areas. Table 5 summarizes specific revisions 
to the training programs offered to new agents in the priority areas, 
agents assigned to priority areas, other agents involved in 
counterterrorism work, and analysts.

Table 5: Selected Revisions to FBI Training Programs in the Priority 
Areas Since September 11, 2001:

Staff: New agent training in counterterrorism and counterintelligence; 
Start date: April 2003; Number to be trained in FY2003: 425 
estimate[A]; Description of revisions: Integrated 
international terrorism fact pattern used throughout training at 
Quantico and other coursework.

Staff: New agents assigned to counterterrorism and counterintelligence; 
Start date: On-going, as assigned; Number to be trained in FY2003: 40 
estimate[B]; [Empty]; Description of revisions: CD-ROM, depending on 
assignment; New agents assigned to counterintelligence must also 
complete the 4-week course given to agents reprogrammed to 
counterintelligence.

Staff: Agents reprogrammed to counterterrorism; Start date: February 
2003; Number to be trained in FY2003: 480[C]; [Empty]; Description of 
revisions: CD-ROM, "Introduction to International Terrorism"; 1-week 
course, lecture-based.

Staff: Agents reprogrammed to counterintelligence; Start date: October 
2002; Number to be trained in FY2003: 213; [Empty]; Description of 
revisions: CDROM, "Introduction to Counterintelligence"; 4-week 
interactive course.

Staff: Agents participating in Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF); Start 
date: March 2003; Number to be trained in FY2003: 224; [Empty]; 
Description of revisions: 2-day course; Prepares trainer to provide 8-
hours of training for FBI and JTTF members in the field.

Staff: Intelligence analysts; Start date: October 2001; Number to be 
trained in FY2003: 1,032[D]; [Empty]; Description of revisions: 5-6 
week Basic Intelligence Research Specialist course; CIA assistance in 
course development and instruction in at least 2 weeks of the course.

Source: GAO analysis of FBI data.

[A] Prior to revising the new agent counterterrorism and 
counterintelligence training, between October and March 2003, the FBI 
Academy added 32 hours of counterterrorism and counterintelligence-
related training to the new agent-training curriculum. During this 
timeframe, 373 new agents received an additional 32 hours of training.

[B] Approximately 5 percent of each new agent class is assigned to 
counterterrorism or counterintelligence squads immediately following 
graduation from the FBI Academy.

[C] There were 480 agents permanently reassigned to counterterrorism; 
however, according to FBI officials, SACs have the authority to 
designate which of these agents need the revised counterterrorism 
training. FBI officials said that they are planning to extend classes 
in Basic International Terrorism Operations to the end of the calendar 
year to ensure that all agents who need the training will be provided 
an opportunity to take the class.

[D] The 1,032 analysts are to include 188 to be trained in basic 
analysis and 844 to be trained in specialty analysis. Additionally, in 
fiscal year 2002, 55 analysts were trained in basic analysis and 138 
analysts trained in specialty coursework.

[End of table]

Current Training Offered to FBI Employees in the Priority Areas:

The FBI's training programs in the priority areas, as of June 1, 2003, 
are summarized in table 6.

Table 6: Summary of Training Provided in the Priority Areas, as of June 
1, 2003:

Category of staff: New agent training at FBI Academy:

Category of staff: All new agents; Summary of training provided: * 17 
weeks (684 hours); * Integrated case scenario; * Independent study 
project; Examples of courses offered: * Legal Instruction, Ethics, 
Leadership; * Civil Rights, Firearms, Interviewing; * Behavioral 
Science, Forensic Science; * Concepts and Tactics for Survival; * 
Undercover Operations, Surveillance.

Category of staff: Counterterrorism/; counterintelligence; Summary of 
training provided: 110 hours of Middle Eastern Criminal Enterprise case 
study, domestic terrorism-related training; * Integrated classroom 
investigative, counterterrorism and counterintelligence training; * 
Additional hours of reading; Examples of courses offered: * 
Investigating Criminal Enterprises; * Middle Eastern Cultural Issues; * 
International Terrorism; * Asset Development.

Category of staff: Cyber; Summary of training provided: 2-hour course 
specifically on Cyber Division investigations; 25 hours of general 
computer training; * 4 to 8 hours on cyber crime; Examples of courses 
offered: * Cyber Crime Exercise; * Computer Skills Development/ Data 
Analysis.

Category of staff: New agent training for agents assigned after 
completion of FBI Academy:

Category of staff: Counterterrorism/; counterintelligence; Summary of 
training provided: * CD-ROM, 15-hours additional training; * 4-week 
interactive course for new agents assigned to counterintelligence; 
Examples of courses offered: * Introduction to International Terrorism; 
Introduction to Counterintelligence; * Counterintelligence Operations.

Category of staff: Cyber; Summary of training provided: * 1-week, 
required introductory course; * Continuing education include 8 core 
courses from entry level to advanced curriculum offered; Examples of 
courses offered: * Introduction to Cyber Crime Investigations.

Category of staff: Agents shifted to work in priority areas:

Category of staff: Counterterrorism; Summary of training provided: * 1-
week course, lecture-based; Examples of courses offered: * Basic 
International Terrorism Operations.

Category of staff: Counterintelligence; Summary of training provided: * 
4-week course, interactive course for new agents assigned to 
counterintelligence; Examples of courses offered: * 
Counterintelligence Operations Course.

Category of staff: Cyber; Summary of training provided: * 1-week, 
introductory course required; * Continuing education includes 8 core 
courses from entry level to advanced; Examples of courses offered: * 
Introduction to Cyber Crime Investigations.

Category of staff: Agents:

Category of staff: All agents; Summary of training provided: * All 
agents must take at least 15 hours of training per year; * Training is 
offered at Quantico, regionally, and in FBI field offices[A]; * Agents 
must apply and get approved; Examples of courses offered: * Arabic 
Romanization Training; * Bloodborne Pathogens; * Financial 
Underpinnings of Crime; * Hate Crimes.

Category of staff: Agents participating in JTTF; Summary of training 
provided: * 8-hours train-the-trainer course on counterterrorism; * 
Course material will then be offered to FBI field office personnel and 
JTTF members[B]; Examples of courses offered: * Counterterrorism 
awareness training.

Category of staff: Intelligence analysts:

Category of staff: All analysts; Summary of training provided: * 
College of Analytical Studies provides 5-6 week course on basic 
analysis; * CIA assisted in development of curriculum and teaches 2 
weeks; Examples of courses offered: * Analytical Thinking and 
Presentation; * Arabic Romanization; * Asset Vetting.

Category of staff: Analysts, with 2 years or less; experience; Summary 
of training provided: * College of Analytical Studies provides 
coursework; Examples of courses offered: * Basic Intelligence Research 
Specialist (IRS) Course; * Lexis/Nexis, PenLink; * Project Gateway/
Basic Financial Analysis.

Category of staff: Advanced Analysts, with 2; years or more experience; 
Summary of training provided: * College of Analytical Studies provides 
coursework; Examples of courses offered: * Statement Analysis for the 
IRS; * Strategic Thinking; * Writing National Level Threat Assessments.

Source: GAO analysis of FBI data.

[A] Course offerings are subject to change due to FBI priorities, 
according to FBI officials.

[B] This may include state and local law enforcement officers.

[End of table]

FBI Revised Overall Training Program to Enhance Training to Entire 
Workforce:

The FBI has begun to implement a plan to restructure its training 
program. As reflected in figure 11, the plan established several units 
to establish curriculum, develop courses and tools, and deliver 
training for all FBI personnel, special agents, as well as support 
staff.

Figure 11: Proposed Training Division Organization Chart:

[See PDF for image]

[End of figure]

[End of section]

Appendix V: Selected Statutes and Guidelines Relevant to FBI 
Investigations:

USA PATRIOT Act:

To provide the intelligence community and law enforcement with 
additional means to fight terrorism and prevent future terrorist 
attacks, Congress enacted a wide range of investigative enhancements in 
the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools 
Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT) 
Act.[Footnote 44] Among other things, the USA PATRIOT Act provides 
federal officials with enhanced surveillance authorities to intercept 
wire, oral, and electronic communications relating to terrorism. The 
act also provides the authority to seize voice-mail messages pursuant 
to warrants. The act further contains a number of provisions 
authorizing information sharing between intelligence and law 
enforcement agencies--such as the sharing of foreign intelligence 
information obtained as part of a criminal investigation with any 
federal law enforcement, intelligence, protective, immigration, 
national defense, or national security official in order to assist the 
official in the performance of his or her official duties.

The USA PATRIOT Act also seeks to enhance federal law enforcement 
agency abilities to, for example, investigate and combat financial-
related crimes by adding new money laundering and counterfeiting crimes 
and by increasing related criminal penalties. The USA PATRIOT Act 
further seeks to strengthen federal criminal laws against terrorism by, 
for example, making it a crime to engage in terrorist attacks or other 
acts of violence against mass transportation systems. The act also made 
it a crime to harbor or conceal terrorists where a person knows, or has 
reasonable grounds to believe, that the person harbored or concealed 
has committed or is about to commit a specified terrorism-related 
offense.

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978:

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978,[Footnote 45] (FISA) 
as amended, established legal standards and a process that the Attorney 
General, including the FBI, must use to obtain authorization for 
electronic surveillance and physical searches when seeking foreign 
intelligence and counterintelligence information within the United 
States. FISA also created a special court--the Foreign Intelligence 
Surveillance Court--with jurisdiction to hear applications for and 
grant orders approving FISA surveillance and searches. FISA orders may 
be issued, in general, upon a FISA Court finding of probable cause to 
believe that a suspect target is a foreign power or an agent of a 
foreign power, and that the places at which the surveillance is 
directed are being used, or are about to be used, by such targets.

The USA PATRIOT Act amended various FISA provisions to authorize, for 
example, roving surveillance under FISA to, in essence, follow a person 
who uses multiple communication devices or locations, where the FISA 
court finds that the actions of the target may have the effect of 
thwarting the identification of a specified person. Another amendment 
allows senior level FBI personnel, in certain circumstances involving 
international terrorism or clandestine intelligence, to apply to the 
FISA Court for an order for the production of tangible items--such as 
books, records, papers, or documents.

Selected Attorney General Guidelines:

When conducting investigations, the FBI is subject to various sets of 
guidelines established by the Attorney General.[Footnote 46] The 
Attorney General's Guidelines on General Crimes, Racketeering 
Enterprise and Terrorism Enterprise Investigations provide general 
standards and procedures for the FBI's conduct of criminal 
investigations. They are designed to govern the circumstances under 
which such investigations may be begun, the permissible scope, 
duration, subject matters, and objectives of such investigations. Under 
these guidelines, for example, the FBI may conduct investigations when 
the facts and circumstances reasonably indicate that a federal crime 
had been, is being, or will be committed. Preliminary inquiries may be 
performed when there is not yet a reasonable indication of criminal 
activities but where information requires further scrutiny beyond a 
prompt and limited checking of initial leads.

The Attorney General has also issued a separate set of guidelines 
prescribing the FBI's investigative authority related to international 
terrorism--that is, terrorist activities occurring totally outside the 
United States or which transcend national boundaries. The Attorney 
General Guidelines for FBI Foreign Intelligence Collection and Foreign 
Counterintelligence Investigations (significant portions of which are 
classified) govern all foreign intelligence, foreign 
counterintelligence, foreign intelligence support activities, and 
intelligence investigations of international terrorism. These 
guidelines also apply to FBI investigation of espionage statutes and 
investigations on behalf of, or in cooperation with, foreign 
governments.

[End of section]

Appendix VI: Comparison of the 2002 and 1989 Attorney General's 
Guidelines:

Table 7 presents a side-by-side comparison of the key changes in the 
2002 Guidelines, as compared with the most recent previous version of 
the Guidelines, which were issued in 1989 (and amended slightly in 
1994).

Table 7: Comparison of Selected Changes between the 2002 and 1989 
Attorney General's Guidelines:

Section I: General Principles:

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Preliminary inquiries and 
investigations shall be conducted with as little intrusion into 
individual privacy as needs permit; 2002 Attorney General's 
Guidelines: No significant change except: * FBI shall not hesitate 
to use any authorized investigative technique; * Intrusive techniques 
are warranted based on seriousness of crime or strength of information 
indicating its commission.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Section II: Inquiries and 
investigations should not be initiated based solely on the exercise of 
constitutionally protected rights; 2002 Attorney General's 
Guidelines: Section II: No significant change.

Section II: General Crimes Investigations:

Preliminary inquiry:

General authority; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: May be initiated 
in response to information indicating possible criminal activity; 
Measured investigative response, as little intrusion as possible, and 
short duration; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: No significant 
change except: * duration is subject only to the maximum specified 
limitation on length.

Authorizations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorized for up 
to 90 days; Renewal for 30-day periods; 2002 Attorney General's 
Guidelines: Authorized for up to 180 days; Renewal for 90-day 
periods.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative techniques: FBI HQ 
grants all renewals, based on a written request and statement of 
reasons; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative 
techniques: Field office Special Agent-in-Charge (SAC) may grant two 
renewals, based on a statement of reasons; FBI HQ may grant further 
renewals, based on a written request and statement of reasons.

Investigative techniques; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Matter of 
judgment considering: * intrusiveness, privacy concerns, and damage to 
reputation;; * seriousness of possible crime, and; * strength of 
evidence; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: No significant change 
except matter of judgment should also consider: * objectives and 
available resources.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: All lawful techniques authorized 
except : * mail covers; * mail openings; * nonconsensual electronic 
surveillance; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: All lawful 
techniques authorized except: * mail openings; * nonconsensual 
electronic surveillance.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Specified techniques require no 
FBI supervisory agent approval; Other lawful techniques require FBI 
supervisory agent approval, except in exigent circumstances; 2002 
Attorney General's Guidelines: No significant change.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Full investigation: Generally 
should be less intrusive than full investigation; Highly intrusive 
techniques should be approved only in compelling circumstances; 2002 
Attorney General's Guidelines: Full investigation: Given a choice, 
consider less intrusive methods if they would be just as timely and 
effective; Do not hesitate to use intrusive techniques if warranted by 
the circumstances.

Full investigation:

General authority; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: May be initiated 
when facts or circumstances reasonably indicate that a crime has, is 
being, or will be committed; May be conducted to prevent, solve, or 
prosecute such activity; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: No 
significant change.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorizations: For future criminal 
acts, facts and circumstances must reasonably indicate that such a 
crime will occur in the future; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: 
Authorizations: No significant change.

Authorizations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: FBI supervisory 
agent may authorize; Notification to U.S. Attorney, DOJ, and FBI HQ 
required for sensitive criminal matters; No specified limit on 
duration; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: No significant change.

Investigative techniques; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: See 
section IV below; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: See section IV 
below.

Section III: Criminal Intelligence Investigations:

Racketeering enterprise investigation:

General authority; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: May be initiated 
when two or more persons are engaged in racketeering for monetary or 
commercial gain; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: May be initiated 
when two or more persons are engaged in racketeering as defined in 
federal racketeering statutes.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorizations: Racketeering must 
involve violence, extortion, narcotics, or public corruption; 
Otherwise, requires approval by FBI Director and Attorney General 
(AG); 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorizations: If 
federally-defined terrorism is involved, investigation is to be 
conducted under terrorism enterprise investigative standards.

Authorizations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: SAC may authorize 
defined racketeering, with notification to AG or designee (1994 
amendment). Otherwise requires approval by FBI Director with AG 
concurrence; AG may request status reports; 2002 Attorney General's 
Guidelines: SAC may authorize based on written statement of facts, with 
notification to FBI HQ, DOJ Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney, and AG; 
DOJ may request status reports.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorized for up to 180 days; 
Renewal for up to 180-day periods; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: 
Authorized for up to 1 year; Renewal for up to 1-year periods.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative techniques: FBI HQ 
grants all renewals, with AG concurrence if needed initially; 2002 
Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative techniques: SAC may grant 
renewals, with notification to FBI HQ, DOJ Criminal Division, and AG.

Investigative techniques; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: See 
section IV below; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: See section IV 
below.

Terrorism enterprise investigation:

General authority; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Domestic 
security/terrorism investigation may be initiated when two or more 
persons are involved in: * furthering political or social goals 
through force or violence and a violation of federal criminal law; 
2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Terrorism enterprise investigation 
may be initiated when two or more persons are involved in: * 
furthering political or social goals through force or violence and a 
violation of federal criminal law,; * terrorism that involves a 
violation of federal law, or; * committing a federal act of terrorism 
as defined in federal law.

Authorizations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: FBI HQ may 
authorize, with notification to DOJ Office of Intelligence Policy 
Review (OIPR); AG may request status reports; 2002 Attorney General's 
Guidelines: SAC may authorize, with notification to FBI HQ, DOJ 
Criminal Division and OIPR, U.S. Attorney, and AG; DOJ may request 
status reports.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Authorized for up to 180 days; 
Renewal for up to 180-day periods; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: 
Authorized for up to 1 year; Renewal for up to 1-year periods.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative techniques: FBI HQ 
grants all renewals; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Investigative 
techniques: SAC may grant renewals, with notification to FBI HQ, DOJ 
Criminal Division, OIPR, and AG.

Investigative techniques; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: See 
section IV below; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: See section IV 
below.

Section IV: Investigative Techniques:

General authority; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Unless otherwise 
indicated, all lawful techniques are authorized; 2002 Attorney 
General's Guidelines: No significant change.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Matter of judgment considering: 
* intrusiveness, privacy concerns, and damage to reputation;; * 
seriousness of possible crime, and; * strength of evidence; 2002 
Attorney General's Guidelines: No significant change except matter of 
judgment should also consider: * objectives and available resources.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Specific techniques: Before 
employing a technique, consider whether less intrusive means could be 
used as timely and effectively; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: 
Specific techniques: Given a choice of techniques, consider less 
intrusive methods if they would be just as timely and effective; Do 
not hesitate to use intrusive techniques if warranted by the 
circumstances.

Specific techniques; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Specific 
requirements or restrictions apply to use of the following techniques: 
* Confidential informants,; * Undercover operations,; * Nonconsensual 
electronic surveillance,; * Pen register/trap and trace,; * Access to 
stored wire and electronic records,; * Consensual electronic 
surveillance,; * Search and seizure, and; * Persons represented by 
counsel; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Specific requirements or 
restrictions apply to use of the following techniques: * Same as 1989 
guidelines, plus; * Classified investigative technologies.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: If undercover or informant 
activities may influence an organization's exercising of its 1st 
Amendment rights: * Must be approved by FBI HQ, with notification to 
DOJ; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: If undercover or informant 
activities relate to an organization's exercising of its 1st Amendment 
rights: * Must fully comply with AG's guidelines on undercover 
operations and confidential informants.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Section V: For consensual 
electronic surveillance: * Advance authorization must be obtained from 
SAC and U.S. Attorney; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Section V: 
For consensual electronic surveillance: * Advance authorization must 
be obtained from SAC or Assistant SAC, and U.S. Attorney or Assistant 
AG.

Section V: Dissemination and Maintenance of Information:

Information systems; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Not included; 
2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: FBI shall maintain database of 
inquiries and investigations that permits retrieval of status and 
subjects.

Section VI: Counterterrorism Activities and Other Authorizations:

Counterterrorism activities; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Not 
included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Regarding information 
systems: * FBI may operate and participate in identification, 
tracking, and information systems for purposes of detecting, 
prosecuting, or preventing terrorism; * System information may come 
from sources permitted by law, prior or ongoing investigations, 
government sources, public sources, and voluntary private sources; * 
Systems operated by the FBI shall be reviewed periodically.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Other authorizations: Not 
included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Other authorizations: 
Regarding public places and events: * FBI may visit any place and 
attend any event that is open to the public, for purposes of detecting 
or preventing terrorism; * No information may be retained from such 
visits unless it relates to potential criminal or terrorist activity.

Other authorizations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Not 
included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Regarding general 
topical research: * Online sites and forums may be searched and 
accessed on subject areas generally useful to investigations; * 
Research is not allowed on individual names or identifiers except where 
incidental to topical research.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Not included; 2002 Attorney 
General's Guidelines: Online resources are generally authorized for 
the purposes of detecting or preventing terrorism or other criminal 
activities.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Privacy and other limitations: Not 
included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: Privacy and other 
limitations: FBI may prepare general reports and assessments on 
terrorism or other criminal activities for purposes of strategic 
planning or investigative support.

Privacy and other limitations; 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: Not 
included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: FBI may not maintain 
files on individuals solely for the purpose of monitoring First 
Amendment activities or other rights protected by the Constitution.

1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: 1989 Attorney General's Guidelines: 
Not included; 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines: 2002 Attorney 
General's Guidelines: All law enforcement activities must have a valid 
law enforcement purpose as described in the Guidelines.

Source: GAO analysis of the 2002 and 1989 Attorney General's 
Guidelines.

[End of table]

[End of section]

Appendix VII: Internal Controls to Protect Against Civil Liberties 
Abuses:

The following sections present more detail about (1) the extent to 
which internal controls have been incorporated into the Attorney 
General's Guidelines on General Crimes, Racketeering Enterprise and 
Terrorism Enterprise Investigations, (2) other internal control 
mechanisms that are in place to ensure FBI compliance with the 
Guidelines,[Footnote 47] and (3) concerns about how the Guidelines may 
adversely affect the protection of civil liberties.

Internal Controls Included in the Guidelines:

The Guidelines themselves are an internal control--establishing the 
Attorney General's parameters for the FBI's investigative authority. 
For example, the internal controls described in table 8 are designed to 
ensure that only valid, authorized transactions and events--in this 
case, investigative activities such as preliminary inquiries[Footnote 
48] and terrorism enterprise investigations--are initiated or entered 
into by the FBI. These controls specify who is authorized to approve 
the activity, how long the activity may remain authorized until 
reapproval is required, and what notifications of the activity are 
required within and outside the FBI, thereby facilitating the 
verification of compliance.

Table 8: Controls in the Guidelines Relating to Authorization and 
Renewal of Preliminary Inquiries and Terrorism Enterprise 
Investigations:

Preliminary inquiries; Authorizing official: Initiation: FBI 
supervisor; Authorizing official: Extension: * SAC, first two 
extensions; * FBI HQ, any further extensions; Authorized 
length: Initiation: 180 days; Authorized length: Extension: 90 days; 
Required notifications: Initiation: * Required for "sensitive 
criminal matters" only; * SAC must notify U.S. Attorney or other DOJ 
official; Required notifications: Extension: None required.

Terrorism Enterprise investigations; Authorizing official: Initiation: 
SAC; Authorizing official: Extension: SAC; Authorized length: 
Initiation: 1 year; Authorized length: Extension: 1 year; 
Required notifications: Initiation: * SAC must notify FBI HQ; Required 
notifications: Extension: * SAC must notify FBI HQ.

Authorized length: Extension: Authorizing official: 
Authorizing official: Required notifications: Initiation: 
Authorizing official: * FBI HQ must notify DOJ Criminal Division and 
OIPR, and any affected U.S. Attorney; Required notifications: 
Extension: Authorizing official: * FBI HQ must notify DOJ Criminal 
Division.

Authorized length: Extension: Extension: 
Required notifications: Initiation: Initiation: * DOJ Criminal Division 
must notify AG and Deputy AG; Required notifications: Extension: 
Extension: * DOJ Criminal Division must notify AG and Deputy AG.

Source: GAO analysis of the 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines.

[End of table]

Similarly, the controls described in table 9 are also designed to 
ensure that only valid, authorized transactions and events are 
initiated or entered into by the FBI--in this case, investigative 
techniques, including the new counterterrorism authorities granted 
under the revised Guidelines.

Table 9: Controls in the Guidelines Relating to Authorized and 
Prohibited Investigative Activities:

Preliminary inquiries; Authorized activities or techniques: * All 
lawful techniques except those specifically prohibited; Prohibited 
activities or techniques: * Mail openings; * Nonconsensual electronic 
surveillance.

Terrorism enterprise investigations; Authorized activities or 
techniques: * All lawful techniques; Prohibited activities or 
techniques: * None identified.

Counterterrorism activities and other authorizations; Authorized 
activities or techniques: * For counterterrorism purposes, FBI may 
operate and participate in identification, tracking, and information 
systems containing data from FBI, government, public, or private 
sources; Prohibited activities or techniques: * None identified, but 
systems must be periodically reviewed to ensure compliance with 
applicable, laws, regulations, policies, and guidelines.

Authorized activities or techniques: * For counterterrorism purposes, 
FBI is authorized to visit places and events that are also open to the 
public; Prohibited activities or techniques: * Information from such 
visits may not be retained unless it relates to potential criminal or 
terrorist activity.

Authorized activities or techniques: * FBI is authorized to conduct 
topical and online research, including accessing online sites and 
forums; Prohibited activities or techniques: * General online or 
topical research may not be conducted on individual names or 
identifiers, except where incidental to topical research.

Authorized activities or techniques: Authorized activities or 
techniques: * Authorized activities must have a valid law enforcement 
purpose and conform to applicable laws, regulations, policies, and 
guidelines; Prohibited activities or techniques: Prohibited 
activities or techniques: * Maintaining files on individuals solely for 
the purpose of monitoring activities protected by the 1st Amendment or 
other rights secured by the Constitution is prohibited.

Source: GAO analysis of the 2002 Attorney General's Guidelines.

[End of table]

Regarding counterterrorism activities and other authorizations as 
identified in table 9 above, the controls associated with these 
authorities are less specific when compared with those associated with 
the initiation and renewal of preliminary inquiries and terrorism 
enterprise investigations, as described in table 8. For example:

* Regarding the FBI's authorization to operate and participate in 
counterterrorism information systems, there is no indication of how 
agents are to document this activity, nor how supervisors are to ensure 
that the purpose of the activity is detecting or preventing terrorism. 
Further, there is no indication of when such systems should be 
reviewed, what these reviews should entail (e.g., verifying compliance 
with access, use, or data retention requirements), and whether any such 
reviews are required if systems accessed are not operated by the FBI.

* Regarding the FBI's authorization to visit public places or events, 
there is no indication of how agents are to document the activity, how 
supervisors are to ensure that the purpose of the activity is detecting 
or preventing terrorism, and how compliance with the prohibition on 
maintaining information is to be verified.

FBI headquarters officials said that agents are not required to obtain 
supervisory approval before accessing terrorism information systems, 
but they are encouraged to seek legal guidance to ensure they comply 
with applicable guidelines. Also, the process of creating such systems 
involves reviews for compliance with the Privacy Act and other 
applicable regulations, and any data that are collected, used, or 
disseminated are subject to Privacy Act restrictions. Regarding 
visiting public places and events, agents should obtain prior 
supervisory approval, if time permits, and the date, time, and place of 
the visit should always be noted in the case file. For either of these 
new authorities, the FBI's supervisory case file review process is the 
primary vehicle to ensure that agents comply with the Guidelines and do 
not go beyond their stated authorities.

FBI Policies and Procedures, Training, and Supervision:

Regarding policies and procedures, FBI headquarters officials told us 
that guidance such as that contained in the Guidelines is to be 
incorporated into the FBI's investigative and administrative manuals on 
a regular basis.[Footnote 49] Consistent with this practice, the FBI is 
in the process of completing revisions to its Manual of Investigative 
Operations and Guidelines (MIOG) policies and procedures manuals to 
incorporate guidance on the implementation of Guidelines.

Training on the Guidelines is included in all new agent training 
provided at the FBI Academy. In addition, on-board agents received 
training on the Guidelines through the FBI's Office of General Counsel, 
in the form of direct guidance provided to each field office, various 
in-service training presentations, and as part of basic training 
provided to agents being transferred to counterterrorism from other 
program areas. The field office Chief Division Counsels also received 
Guidelines training, and they told us this training was subsequently 
provided to agents in their field offices during periodic legal 
updates. We found that about 55 percent of the field agents who 
completed our questionnaire in April 2003 indicated that they had 
received training relating to the Guidelines--but the majority of that 
was on-the-job training. The FBI's training program was recently re-
engineered to, among other things, update the new agent and in-service 
training curriculum to better address the FBI's shift in resources from 
criminal programs to priority areas, such as counterterrorism. Training 
on the Guidelines continues and is included in the new curriculum 
framework for both new and in-service agents.

With respect to supervision, supervisory agents are responsible for 
monitoring agents' work and, more formally, they are to perform 
periodic case file reviews at least every 90 days on all cases being 
worked by their agents. During these case file reviews, supervisors are 
to monitor the progress of cases by reviewing investigative work 
completed accomplished, verifying compliance with any applicable 
policies and procedures (including the Guidelines), and assessing the 
validity of continuing with the case. They also review investigative 
work planned for the next period--including, for example, any 
significant data collection that will be employed--and discuss any 
issues associated with or approvals needed to carry out the 
investigative strategy. Nearly all the field agents who completed our 
questionnaire indicated that their supervisors performed case file 
reviews every 90 days--more often in some cases. As an additional 
oversight, FBI officials told us that field office Assistant Special 
Agents-in-Charge periodically check supervisory case file reviews to 
ensure the adequacy of the case file review process. No specific 
changes to the FBI's supervisory case file review process were made in 
response to the issuance of the revised Guidelines.

FBI Field Office Inspections:

The FBI's Inspection Division is responsible for reviewing FBI program 
divisions and field offices to ensure compliance with applicable laws 
and regulations and the efficient and economical management of 
resources. The Inspection Division attempts to regularly inspect all 
FBI units at least once every 3 years. Among other things, inspectors 
review field office case files to (1) assess the adequacy of 
supervisors' case file reviews and (2) ensure that investigative work 
complies with administrative and investigative policies and procedures. 
According to FBI headquarters inspection officials, it is in the 
context of reviewing case files that inspectors determine compliance 
with the procedures and other guidance contained in the Guidelines.

We reviewed selected FBI inspection reports completed since October 
1999--including the most recent inspections for the 14 field offices we 
visited and 4 other field office inspections completed after the 
Guidelines were issued. Our review confirmed that inspectors were 
reviewing compliance with the Guidelines and adequacy of supervisory 
case files reviews during their inspection. We noted the following 
inspection findings:

* In four inspections, a preliminary inquiry was not converted to a 
full investigation after expiration of the initial authorization 
period.

* In seven inspections, some case file reviews were not performed in a 
timely manner.

* In one inspection, an investigation was opened without approval by 
the field office Agent-in-Charge or notification to FBI headquarters.

With respect to the new investigative authorities granted under the 
revised Guidelines, in reviewing the four inspection reports completed 
after the Guidelines were issued, there were no findings related to FBI 
noncompliance with these new investigative authorities.

The FBI's inspections process was reengineered in late 2002, resulting 
in revisions to the various inspection audit guides and checklists that 
inspectors use to gather advance data about program operations and 
investigative activities and plan their work.[Footnote 50] In reviewing 
these audit guides, we found two program review guides that included a 
reference to the Guidelines--that is, that inspectors should "verify 
compliance with Attorney General Guidelines relating to the initiation, 
renewal, or continuance of investigations or investigative techniques." 
According to the FBI's Chief Inspector, it is not necessary to 
incorporate specific references to the revised Guidelines into the 
inspection audit guides, since inspectors are already verifying 
compliance with all Attorney General Guidelines (and other policies and 
procedures) by reviewing case files and supervisory case file reviews.

Investigations of FBI Misconduct and Abuse:

Within the FBI, the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) is 
generally responsible for investigating and adjudicating allegations of 
misconduct by FBI employees. OPR's investigative case activity is shown 
in table 10, below.

Table 10: Allegations of FBI Misconduct Received and Investigated by 
FBI OPR--October 2000 through March 2003:

Cases opened; Fiscal year: 2001: 612; Fiscal year: 2002: 685; Fiscal 
year: 2003[A]: 282.

Number of offenses alleged; Fiscal year: 2001: 1,154; Fiscal year: 
2002: 1,188; Fiscal year: 2003[A]: 408.

Cases closed; Fiscal year: 2001: 551; Fiscal year: 2002: 689; Fiscal 
year: 2003[A]: 326.

Substantiated and disciplinary action taken; Fiscal year: 2001: 347; 
Fiscal year: 2002: 519; Fiscal year: 2003[A]: 168.

Source: FBI OPR.

[A] As of March 2003.

[End of table]

OPR does not currently capture statistics regarding the total number of 
allegations received or the number of allegations that are closed 
without inquiry. However, OPR officials told us they were not aware of 
any cases involving violations of the authorities in the revised 
Guidelines related to terrorism investigations. Based on their 
standardized offense codes and the time period identified above, they 
identified a number of closed cases involving violations of Attorney 
General Guidelines, violations of individual civil rights, and 
violations of investigative policies and procedures. However, they told 
us that the only way to verify whether any of these cases specifically 
involved some aspect of the revised Guidelines would be to review each 
of the individual investigative case files. An OPR official told us 
that a redesign of their computer system is in progress, and additional 
information on allegations received and investigations opened will be 
captured when the redesign is complete. However, no changes are planned 
to allow the tracking of misconduct cases specifically related the 
revised Guidelines.

Within the Department of Justice, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) 
also has responsibility for ensuring that allegations of FBI misconduct 
are appropriately handled. Beginning in July 2001, all allegations 
against FBI employees were to be submitted initially to the OIG for 
review. The OIG then decides which complaints it will investigate and 
which it will refer back to OPR for investigation. As shown in table 
10, most allegations of FBI misconduct are referred to OPR for 
investigation or other disposition. The OIG did not specifically track 
the number of allegations involving the Guidelines, but they did report 
that the most common complaints received were job performance failure, 
waste and misuse of government property, and other official misconduct.

Table 11: Allegations of FBI Misconduct Received and Investigated by 
DOJ OIG--July 2001 through February 2003:

Disposition of allegations: Referred to OIG's Investigation Division; 
Number of allegations: 71; Percent: 5.6%.

Disposition of allegations: Referred to OIG's Office of Oversight and 
Review; Number of allegations: 14; Percent: 1.1.

Disposition of allegations: Forwarded to FBI OPR as "management 
issues"[A]; Number of allegations: 1,061; Percent: 84.3.

Disposition of allegations: Referred to FBI as "monitored 
referrals"[B]; Number of allegations: 41; Percent: 3.3.

Disposition of allegations: Informational items filed for future 
reference[C]; Number of allegations: 72; Percent: 5.7.

Disposition of allegations: Total; Number of allegations: 1,259; 
Percent: 100.0%.

Source: DOJ OIG.

[A] This category includes allegations within the FBI's jurisdiction 
but not against FBI employees; complaints that cite no improper act by 
an FBI employee; and administrative issues such as lost credentials and 
misuse of FBI equipment.

[B] Monitored referrals require FBI OPR to investigate the allegation 
and report their findings to the OIG.

[C] This category includes information that provides no viable leads to 
investigate, repetitive information that has either been addressed or 
previously filed, and information from sources in which the credibility 
of the source is in question.

[End of table]

The OIG also has responsibility under the USA Patriot Act[Footnote 51] 
to receive and investigate all allegations of civil rights or civil 
liberties abuses raised against DOJ employees. Between October 2001 and 
February 2003, the OIG received 35 allegations involving FBI violations 
of individual civil liberties, 2 of which were reported to involve 
noncompliance with Attorney General Guidelines. Upon further review, 
however, one involved an illegal search, one involved a coerced 
statement, and neither involved noncompliance with the new authorities 
granted under the Guidelines. As part of its mission to oversee DOJ 
programs and operations, the OIG currently plans to conduct an 
evaluation of the FBI's entire process of employee discipline. 
Furthermore, in April 2003, the OIG began a review of the FBI's 
implementation of all Attorney General's Guidelines that were revised 
in May 2002--including the domestic investigative guidelines.

Concerns about How the Guidelines May Adversely Affect Civil Liberties:

When the revised Guidelines were issued, private sector groups raised 
concerns about what they saw as a relaxing of investigative controls 
over the FBI, which represented a potential threat to individual civil 
liberties. For example:

* Private sector officials said that the FBI is now allowed to gather 
information at any place or event that is open to the public--even in 
the absence of any indication of criminal activity. This encourages a 
return to the days when the FBI sent agents into churches and other 
organizations during the civil rights movement, in an attempt to block 
the movement and suppress antigovernment dissent.

* These officials also noted that liberalization of the Guidelines 
which allows the FBI to access and analyze data from commercial and 
private sector databases will result in a return to profiling of 
individuals and building of intelligence dossiers. The inaccuracy or 
misuse of such data could lead to innocent persons being suspected of 
crimes.

None of the private sector officials we met with could provide specific 
examples of the FBI abusing the new authorities granted under the 
Guidelines. Rather, their concerns stemmed from the notion that 
granting the FBI broader investigative authorities--which can be used 
even in the absence of any suspected criminal activity--not only 
ignores the lessons of past abuses, but is unlikely to result in any 
tangible gains in law enforcement.[Footnote 52]

FBI headquarters officials said that the supervisory case file review 
process is the primary vehicle to ensure that agents comply with 
applicable policies and procedures--including the Guidelines. 
Regarding the authority to visit public places and events, FBI field 
office managers told us that, considering the number of legitimate 
leads coming in and the number of ongoing preliminary inquiries and 
investigations, agents are fully tasked to support existing work and do 
not have the time or need to visit public places or surf the Internet 
to generate additional leads. Based on our field visits, however, we 
found that some agents are proactively using the new investigative 
authorities granted under the revised Guidelines. As shown in table 12, 
as of April 2003, 64 (about 36 percent) of the 176 agents who completed 
our questionnaire indicated they had accessed commercial information or 
databases, 53 (about 30 percent) conducted online Internet searches or 
accessed online sites, and 31 (about 18 percent) visited public places 
or events, prior to opening a preliminary inquiry or investigation. In 
addition, most of the agents who completed the questionnaire indicated 
prior supervisory approval was not needed to perform these activities.

Table 12: Use of New Investigative Authorities under the Revised 
Guidelines by FBI Field Agents Who Completed Our Questionnaires:

Investigative activity: Accessed commercial information or databases; 
Used prior to a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 64; Used during a 
preliminary inquiry or investigation: 153; Supervisory approval prior 
to the activity: 11; No prior supervisory approval needed: 150.

Investigative activity: Accessed other public or private information 
or databases; Used prior to a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 50; 
Used during a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 143; Supervisory 
approval prior to the activity: 24; No prior supervisory approval 
needed: 128.

Investigative activity: Visited public places; and events; Used prior 
to a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 31; Used during a 
preliminary inquiry or investigation: 104; Supervisory approval prior 
to the activity: 48; No prior supervisory approval needed: 96.

Investigative activity: Conducted general topical or subject matter 
research; Used prior to a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 64; 
Used during a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 128; Supervisory 
approval prior to the activity: 9; No prior supervisory approval 
needed: 148.

Investigative activity: Conducted online searches or accessed online 
sites or forums; Used prior to a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 
53; Used during a preliminary inquiry or investigation: 122; 
Supervisory approval prior to the activity: 22; No prior supervisory 
approval needed: 126.

Source: Analysis of FBI field agent responses to GAO questionnaire.

[End of table]

To help assuage public concerns about civil liberties issues, the FBI 
has been reaching out to communities to assure them that, despite the 
emphasis on counterterrorism, investigating abuses remains a high 
priority of the FBI. FBI field offices have been tasked to contact 
Muslim leaders for the purpose of establishing a dialogue and 
discussing procedures for alerting the FBI to civil rights abuses. For 
example, in one field office we visited, five meetings were held during 
the first 4 months of 2003--including meetings with Muslim community 
leaders and a panel discussion to answer questions from the public--
covering topics related to homeland security, FBI employment, and 
community outreach. Throughout the FBI, over 500 outreach meetings 
occurred during the first 5 months after September 11, 2001. In 
addition, some FBI field offices have provided sensitivity training to 
field agents on the Islamic religion and culture. Finally, regarding 
the new investigative authority to visit public places and events, FBI 
headquarters officials are currently considering whether to require 
mandatory supervisory approval prior to allowing an agent to enter a 
public place or attend a public meeting.

FOOTNOTES

[1] See U.S. General Accounting Office, FBI Reorganization: Initial 
Steps Encouraging but Broad Transformation Needed, GAO-02-865T 
(Washington, D.C.: June 21, 2002). We are reviewing issues related to 
the FBI's information technology environment and related management 
practices under a separate engagement.

[2] We did not focus on internal controls associated with other 
statutes and guidelines relevant to FBI investigations. For example, we 
did not focus on the type of alleged abuses recently reported by the 
Department of Justice's Office of the Inspector General (OIG) in June 
2003 concerning the detention of 762 aliens who were detained in 
connection with the FBI terrorism investigations. 

[3] We judgmentally selected field offices with the largest number of 
special agent positions to be reallocated either away from drug 
enforcement or to the counterterrorism program areas based on the FBI's 
May 2002 reallocation plans. As a result, we visited the FBI's Atlanta, 
Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, New York 
City, Phoenix, Sacramento, San Antonio, San Francisco, and Washington 
field offices.

[4] The 176 special agents and 34 analysts from whom we obtained input 
were not randomly selected from all agents and analysts in the 14 
offices we visited. In addition, we did not specifically choose the 
agents who completed our questionnaire. FBI field office managers 
selected agents and analysts to participate in our questionnaire. 
Consequently, we consider the questionnaire and interview results to be 
indicators of the FBI's transformation efforts but they cannot be 
generalized to all agents and analysts in these offices or to the FBI 
nationwide.

[5] We interviewed officials from the National Sheriffs' Association, 
National Association of Chiefs of Police, International Association of 
Chiefs of Police, and local police agencies located in the same cities 
in which we made FBI field office visits.

[6] We interviewed representatives from the American Civil Liberties 
Union, Center for Democracy and Technology, Electronic Privacy 
Information Center, Arab American Institute, Coalition for American-
Islamic Relations, and the League of United Latin American Citizens.

[7] For more information, see U.S. General Accounting Office, Mergers 
and Transformation: Lessons Learned for a Department of Homeland 
Security and Other Federal Agencies, GAO-03-293SP (Washington, D.C.: 
Nov. 14, 2002).

[8] See U.S. General Accounting Office, Results-Oriented Cultures: 
Creating a Clear Linkage between Individual Performance and 
Organizational Success, GAO-03-488 (Washington, D.C.: Mar. 14, 2003). 

[9] The strategic planning reengineering project is one of about 30 
ongoing reengineering projects the FBI has to address issues related to 
its transformation efforts. 

[10] In developing the program plans, operational divisions are to 
incorporate information from field office annual reports about their 
threats, crime situation, and resource needs. Field offices, in 
developing these annual reports, conduct surveys of other federal, 
state, and local law enforcement agencies, as well as other sources, to 
gather relevant information.

[11] The Criminal Investigative Division's program plan is to cover 5 
of the FBI's priorities, including plans for public corruption, civil 
rights, criminal enterprises, violent crime, and white-collar crime.

[12] Over 80 percent of the special agents and 24 of the 34 analysts 
who completed our questionnaire ranked counterterrorism, 
counterintelligence, and cyber crime investigations as the FBI's first, 
second, and third priorities, respectively.

[13] According to Bureau officials, the FBI is currently using the 
Administrative Services Division's Strategic Plan, reengineering 
projects, as well as several ongoing initiatives that address long-term 
human capital issues as a framework for strategic human capital 
planning efforts. When the operational divisions finalize their 
strategic plans and put forth their requirements, FBI officials said 
that the Administrative Services Division will compare these 
requirements with their strategic plan to ensure that human capital 
strategies, plans, and goals are aligned with the operational 
divisions' requirements and needs.

[14] In broad terms, human capital flexibilities represent the policies 
and practices that an organization has the authority to implement in 
managing its workforce to accomplish its mission and achieve its goals. 
See Human Capital: Effective Use of Flexibilities Can Assist Agencies 
in Managing Their Workforces, GAO-03-2 (Washington, D.C: Dec. 6, 2002).

[15] For example, in fiscal year 2002, the FBI offered 18 recruitment 
bonuses and 15 superior qualification appointments. In addition to 
these, the FBI permits reimbursement of relocation expenses for some 
counterterrorism new hires, and in fiscal year 2002 these expenses were 
reimbursed for 35 new hires.

[16] The FBI has taken steps to seek additional legislative authority 
by conducting a pilot program to offer enhanced relocation entitlements 
to fill critical skill positions. 

[17] The FBI has the authority to reprogram funds (i.e., move funds 
between activities within a given account) without notifying the 
relevant appropriations committees unless a specific purpose is 
prohibited or the amount of the reprogramming exceeds a dollar 
threshold ($500,000 or a 10-percent change in funding level, whichever 
is less). Any other reprogramming action requires notification to the 
relevant appropriations committee 15 days in advance of the 
reprogramming.

[18] This figure excludes 11 supervisory positions that were returned 
to the drug program.

[19] The FBI is working with Congress to obtain some flexibility with 
respect to the funding for cyber-related agent positions, according to 
FBI officials.

[20] A workyear represents the full-time employment of one worker for 1 
year.

[21] For this statement, a matter is an allegation that is being or has 
been investigated by the FBI. 

[22] In general, the FBI is currently operating below its authorized 
staffing levels for support personnel.

[23] The FBI also pledged to move 59 agent positions from the violent 
crime and 59 agent positions from white-collar crime, but these moves 
represented a much smaller reduction in agent staffing than the shift 
from the drug enforcement area.

[24] DEA officials said that DEA would continue to provide state and 
local law enforcement agencies with investigative, intelligence, 
training, and financial assistance in addressing their most significant 
or violent drug trafficking problems. 

[25] FBI's drug program workforce is composed of field agent positions 
funded through direct FBI appropriations and those supported with 
OCDETF funds. The OCDETF Program was established in 1982 to focus 
federal, state, and local law enforcement efforts against organized 
crime drug trafficking organizations that pose the most serious threat 
to our national interests.

[26] The HIDTA Program began in 1990 to provide federal assistance to 
help coordinate and enhance federal, state, and local drug enforcement 
efforts in areas of major illegal drug production, manufacturing, 
distribution, transportation, and use.

[27] See U.S. General Accounting Office, DEA's Mobile Enforcement 
Teams: Steps Taken to Enhance Program Management, but More Can Be Done, 
GAO-01-482 (Washington, D.C.: July 2001).

[28] This figure is as of June 2003.

[29] In our report addressing challenges in an intergovernmental 
setting, see U.S. General Accounting Office, Highlights of A GAO 
Symposium: Addressing Key Challenges in an Intergovernmental Setting, 
GAO-03-365SP (Washington, D.C.: Mar. 2003), we note that as a result of 
revenue declines, 37 states had reduced their budgets and that this 
shortfall translated into, among other things, reductions in aid to 
local governments and across the-board spending reductions. In 
addition, the National Association of State Budget Officers suggests 
that states will face a fiscal gap of over $80 billion in fiscal year 
2004.

[30] During the hiring freeze the FBI only hired for positions that 
program managers deemed critical.

[31] Because of the amount of overtime worked in fiscal year 2002, the 
amount anticipated to be worked in fiscal year 2003 and pay raise 
requirements that were not fully funded, the amount of funds available 
in the FBI's Salaries and Expense account for regular pay was less than 
projected when the original goal was set, according to FBI officials. 

[32] Appendix IV provides information on the FBI's allocation of $10 
million provided in the House Conference Report accompanying the fiscal 
year 2003 budget. The Conference report for the Department of Justice 
Appropriation Act, 2003 (P.L. 108-7, 117 Stat. 49 (2003)) indicates 
that the Conferees provided $10 million above the FBI's budget request 
for training needs. H. R. Conf. Rep. No. 108-10, at 617 (2003).

[33] Currently, the Training Division tracks the total number of agents 
who have completed revised training in counterterrroism, but it does 
not track whether those agents were permanently redirected from 
criminal programs to counterterrorism. The Special Agents-in-Charge of 
the field offices have the authority to designate which agents--
permanently redirected or not--should receive revised training. For 
example, an agent who was permanently redirected from a criminal 
program may have had prior experience in counterterrorism 
investigations, alleviating the need for basic counterterrorism 
training, according to FBI officials. 

[34] The Conference report for the Department of Justice Appropriation 
Act, 2003 (P.L. 108-7, 117 Stat. 49 (2003)) indicates that the 
Conferees provided $10 million above the FBI's budget request for 
training needs. H. R. Conf. Rep. No. 108-10, at 617 (2003).

[35] The College of Analytical Studies primarily provides training for 
analysts in the intelligence area. 

[36] Instructors at the College of Analytical Studies include both FBI 
and CIA personnel. As proposed in the training reengineering plan, the 
Special Agent-in-Charge of the FBI Academy will oversee the College of 
Analytical Studies.

[37] In fiscal year 2003, the College of Analytical Studies, with the 
assistance of CIA University, plans to train 188 analysts in basic 
analysis and 844 analysts in specialty coursework.

[38] U.S. General Accounting Office, Standards for Internal Control in 
the Federal Government, GAO-00-21.3.1 (Washington, D.C.: Nov. 1999).

[39] These controls are intended to ensure compliance with various FBI 
policies and procedures and are not specifically focused on the 
Guidelines. The Guidelines are just one of many areas that could be 
covered.

[40] The FBI conducts preliminary inquiries in order to determine the 
validity of an allegation of potential criminal activity and the need 
for a more in-depth investigative effort.

[41] The original Guidelines were adopted in 1976, in large part to 
curb a history of FBI abuses--including surveillance and investigation 
of U.S. citizens when there was no credible evidence of criminal 
activity. 

[42] We excluded details on changes in the counterintelligence program 
because they are classified.

[43] H.R. Conf. Rep. No. 108-10, at 617 (2003).

[44] P.L. 107-56, 115 Stat. 272 (2001).

[45] P.L. 95-511, 92 Stat. 1783 (1978).

[46] Other guidelines include the Attorney General's Guidelines on FBI 
Undercover Operations, the Attorney General's Guidelines Regarding the 
Use of Confidential Informants, and the Attorney General's Procedures 
for Lawful Warrantless Monitoring of Verbal Communications. 

[47] These internal control mechanisms are intended to ensure 
compliance with various FBI policies and procedures and are not 
specifically focused on compliance with the Guidelines. The Guidelines 
are just one of many policies and procedures that could be covered.

[48] Preliminary inquiries are undertaken in order to determine the 
validity of an allegation of potential criminal activity and the need 
for a more in-depth investigative effort. 

[49] These are the Manual of Investigative Operations and Guidelines 
and the Manual of Administrative Operations and Procedures.

[50] For example, there are inspection audit guides covering the 
investigative programs, executive management of the field office, 
electronic surveillance procedures, and evaluation of internal 
controls.

[51] P.L. 107-56, 115 Stat. 272, 391 (2001).

[52] In the mid-1970s, we reported on the FBI's domestic intelligence 
program and also found that, despite intensive efforts to disrupt 
dissident and subversive acts by domestic groups, the program showed 
little evidence of advance knowledge of extremist acts or violence, and 
overall showed few visible results.