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Highlights

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Privacy Office was established with the appointment of the first Chief Privacy Officer in April 2003, as required by the Homeland Security Act of 2002. The Privacy Office's major responsibilities include: (1) reviewing and approving privacy impact assessments (PIA)--analyses of how personal information is managed in a federal system, (2) integrating privacy considerations into DHS decision making and ensuring compliance with the Privacy Act of 1974, and (3) preparing and issuing annual reports and reports on key privacy concerns. GAO was asked to testify on its recent report examining progress made by the DHS Privacy Office in carrying out its statutory responsibilities. GAO compared statutory requirements with Privacy Office processes, documents, and activities.

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