Feature | Jan. 31, 2022

NSA OIG Releases Unclassified Semiannual Report to Congress

The National Security Agency (NSA) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released an unclassified version of its Semiannual Report to Congress (SAR) summarizing the OIG’s oversight work during the second half of Fiscal Year 2021. 

The SAR describes a number of oversight products completed during the reporting period, highlighting the following particularly significant reports:

  • A report identifying trends from 57 inspections of NSA field sites conducted by the OIG over the preceding six year period;
  • A Quick Reaction Report on concerns discovered during an inspection regarding a joint inter-agency task force accessing data without the proper authorization;
  • An audit of the NSA’s use of Cost-Reimbursement Contracts in which the OIG questioned labor charges of approximately $227 million and travel charges of over $226,000 – totaling approximately 75 percent of the costs of the invoices sampled (an unclassified version of this report is available on the OIG’s public website at: oig.nsa.gov);
  • Audits of certain network agency enclaves and of its Security & Counterintelligence (S&CI) organization focused on the agency’s posture against insider threats; and
  • A Quick Reaction Report regarding issues discovered by the OIG related to appropriations for radome purchases and installations. 

In total, the OIG made 469 recommendations to NSA management to address the findings made during the period and assist the agency in improving the economy, efficiency, and effectiveness of its operations.

The SAR also details that, during this reporting period, the OIG Investigations Division processed 700 contacts, resulting in 32 new investigations. The report describes the results of 6 significant investigations completed during the reporting period, and that a total of 42 investigations and 122 inquiries were closed resulting in the proposed recoupment of approximately $70,999 from employees and $681,688 from agency contractors.  As a result of OIG investigations, 21 employees retired, resigned in lieu of removal, or had other disciplinary acts taken against them, including termination.

In his Message submitting the SAR, Inspector General Robert P. Storch also highlighted the work of the OIG’s Diversity and Engagement Committee (DEC), which conducts and coordinates a wide range of programming, training, and activities that reflect the office’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEI&A), and helps to ensure a full range of developmental opportunities for everyone on the OIG team.  IG Storch concluded that “all of [this] makes our work better and is, quite simply, the right thing to do for our people.” 

The SAR also contains a section on the OIG Whistleblower Coordinator Program, emphasizing the OIG’s longstanding commitment to the critical role that whistleblowers play in furthering the OIG’s mission, and the importance enforcing the rights and protections that allow whistleblowers to come forward without fear of reprisal.

The unclassified SAR released today was based on the classified SAR that was previously prepared and transmitted to Congress as required by the Inspector General Act of 1978, as amended (IG Act).