TIGTA Review IRS Contractors
TIGTA Review IRS Contractors U.S. Investigations Services, Inc. (USIS), a former contractor of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), is alleged by the Department of Justice to have provided incomplete reviews of
approximately 665,000 background investigations from March 2008 through September 2012 to the Federal Government.
In addition, the Department of Justice prosecuted several USIS employees under contract to conduct background investigations on behalf of the OPM’s Federal Investigative Services for making false representations regarding their work on background investigations, such as indicating that interviews were conducted or records were obtained, when in fact they were not. Incomplete investigations could result in employing or retaining unsuitable individuals in positions with access to IRS facilities, systems, and sensitive information.
TIGTA performed this audit to assess the impact of OPM background investigations conducted by its former support contractor, USIS, on the IRS.
The OPM provided TIGTA with a list of 3,498 background investigations performed by the USIS on IRS employees or appointees between March 2008 and September 2012 alleged by the Department of Justice to have received incomplete reviews. Of these 3,498 background investigations, IRS records indicated that as of October 2017, the IRS still employed 2,058 of these individuals.
Our review of a statistical sample of 76 USIS background investigations conducted on IRS employees or appointees on board as of February 2016 found that documentation was lacking to support the investigative work represented as completed by the USIS in 75 (99 percent) cases. According to the OPM, the policies during the time frame USIS-conducted background investigations took place did not require documentation to be retained in the investigative file for certain types of investigative actions. However, the OPM concluded that in two of the 76 IRS Reports of Investigation, OPM investigative standards had not been met. TIGTA determined that IRS procedures did not contain a process to assess the quality or completeness of background investigations the OPM provided to it.
You can read the full report here.