Making a list, checking it twice ...

The Justice Department's inspector general's staff issued its first report on technology at the Terrorist Screening Center two years ago. At that time, the IG auditors made 40 recommendations for changes. Its recent report reflects some improvements in the center's operations, but the auditors identified 18 areas in which major improvements were needed.

Additional problems with the TSC's technology that the auditors identified included:
  • Cumbersome FBI data-handling practices that create unnecessary errors, anomalies and inconsistencies in the records.
  • The FBI practice of entering data about suspected terrorists into a downstream database, which prevents other agencies from reviewing the bureau's data.
  • Needless delays in entering data into the terrorist watch list, which cause a significant vulnerability to the integrity of the consolidated database.
  • Duplicate information problems with 6,262 records in the Terrorist Screening Database.
  • Weak quality assurance methods.
  • Tardy redress reviews.
  • Delays in resolving data quality assurance problems that ranged as long as 329 days, with an average processing time of 80 days. As of February, TSC officials were working with 3,000 open quality assurance problems.
  • Delays and inefficiencies in handling requests by specific people for correction or deletion of their watch list records.
Source: Justice Department Inspector General

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