GAO’s reports and testimonies give Congress, federal agencies, and the public timely, fact-based, non-partisan information that can improve government operations and save taxpayers billions of dollars.
The Department of Defense is committed to modernizing the U.S. nuclear enterprise. This includes weapons and the infrastructure to build them (the Department of Energy's responsibility), as well as the aircraft, missiles, and other platforms for delivering them (DOD's responsibility).
Since May 2020, federal efforts to speed the development, manufacturing, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines—previously known as Operation Warp Speed—have been led by the Departments of Health and Human Services and Defense.
The Department of Defense hires private companies to provide "enemy" aircraft for U.S. military training. DOD awarded almost $8.4 billion for these air support contracts in FY 2015 through 2020.
We found contract awards for air support have increased since FY 2015.
For nearly 2 decades, DOD has increased its reliance on Special Operations Forces, pushing some to the limits of their physical and mental well-being. To help special forces and their families, Special Operations Command established the Preservation of the Force and Family program in 2013.
The military services have a rich tradition of initiation ceremonies and rites of passage, but at times, they have included inappropriate or abusive behavior. According to DOD, hazing jeopardizes readiness and weakens trust within the ranks.
The Department of Defense subsidizes the cost of off-base child care through its fee assistance program. Currently, only spouses of servicemembers who die in combat-related incidents can receive this aid for their children.
Civilians make up about 98% of the Army Corps of Engineers' 35,000 personnel. The jobs are highly specialized and it can be difficult for the Corps to recruit, develop, and retain employees.
The Corps has taken significant steps to address its workforce challenges.
Defense contractors are targets for hackers who are trying to access sensitive data. The Department of Defense is working on a framework to certify that contractors have proper cybersecurity practices in place to protect data.
DOD worked with industry and experts on the framework.
The Department of Defense uses intellectual property (IP) to operate and maintain its weapons systems. IP includes computer software, technical data, user manuals, and more. Over the past 3 decades, we reported that insufficient IP can reduce mission readiness and lead to surging costs.