IGs look to expand investigative authority

Agency watchdogs told lawmakers that they would like authority to subpoena former federal employees, contractors and other non-governmental witnesses to give testimony in IG probes.

IT Modernization

Lawmakers seek probe of veterans' records requests backlog

The National Personnel Records Center is facing a backlog of 550,000 requests that built up over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Workforce

FLRA faces backlogs, staffing woes

The agency has been without a general counsel for years, leaving it unable to resolve charges of unfair labor practices, but the Senate is poised to confirm new leadership.

Workforce

TSA head says more union rights coming to airport screeners

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle want the agency to resolve longstanding compensation issues for the frontline Transportation Security Administration workforce.

IT Modernization

Federal CIO tees up 7 new TMF awards

The awards, the first since TMF's $1 billion plus-up in the American Rescue Plan Act, are expected to be made public soon.

IG reports delays in COVID notification in GSA facilities

A report from the General Services Administration's Office of the Inspector General says the agency's Public Buildings Services at times failed to follow CDC guidelines around reporting and cleaning procedures for COVID-19 incidents.

IT Modernization

Report: Agencies aren't fielding interactive digital forms

A law passed in 2018 requiring executive agencies to make online versions of paper-based forms used by the public, but only a few are fully compliant according to a new report.

Workforce

Was DOD ready for telework in 2020?

Slow networks, a lack of management buy-in and the need for more government equipment all affected how DOD feds transitioned to telework at the start of the pandemic, new reports from DOD's IG found.

Cybersecurity

Census servers hacked in 2020

A watchdog report indicates that aging remote-access servers at the Census Bureau were successfully targeted by hackers in early 2020 using a known vulnerability, and while no data was stolen, the incident revealed flaws in the bureau's cybersecurity response.

Acquisition

Watchdog says contractor oversight was lacking in Afghanistan

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction's newest report calls out the government's failure to oversee contractors as a source of waste, fraud and abuse.

Cybersecurity

Inconsistent job coding may undercut DOD’s cyber workforce efforts

A DOD inspector general audit found that while the Pentagon has made strides, inconsistent job coding for civilian cyber work roles across filled and vacant positions may hinder recruiting and retention.

Acquisition

How VA can succeed with its EHR mega-program

The former CIO of the Department of Veterans Affairs offers some ideas for course correction in the agency's flagging $20 billion–plus Electronic Health Records Modernization program.

Cybersecurity

TSA ramps up fuel pipeline cyber strategy

At a Senate hearing, the TSA administrator updated lawmakers on the implementation of two recent cybersecurity directives issued in the wake of the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline.

Acquisition

VA to continue pause on Cerner deployment for six more months

At the end of calendar 2021, the Department of Veterans Affairs expects to announce a new schedule for the deployment of its $21 billion electronic health record modernization project.

Digital Government

DHS lacks comprehensive strategy to counter violent extremism, report says

The Department of Homeland Security is failing to assess critical external factors and has not yet implemented a data governance framework while developing strategies around terrorism prevention, a new report warns.

IT Modernization

Lawmakers balk at cost-overruns, transparency issues with VA's $21 billion health record program

At a Senate hearing last week, Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough noted deficiencies in training including the lack of a real system available for use by clinicians in advance of the go-live date for a new, integrated health care software system.

Digital Government

White House stresses stakeholder engagement in Evidence Act guidance

Three years after its passage, the Biden administration is now trying to provide clarity and additional recommendations for agencies still struggling to implement the Evidence-Based Policy Act.

Digital Government

Lawmakers mull federal response to state and local technology gaps

One potential fix could be for the federal government to harmonize its cybersecurity and data protection rules for state and local partners across federal agencies that interact with state systems.

IT Modernization

DOD CIO takes heat on the Hill for pace of MilCloud 2.0 migrations

Rep. Stephanie Bice (R-Okla.) called it a "delayed realization of enhanced security" amid recent high-profile cybersecurity attacks.

Cybersecurity

VA watchdog warns of security risks from undocumented PIV cards

A new report warns contracting officers at the Veterans Health Administration are failing to comply with agency and federal guidelines ensuring contractor personnel return personal identity verification (PIV) cards after employment.

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