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Four Newly Issued GAO Reports of Interest

Four Newly Issued GAO Reports of Interest

Four Newly Issued GAO Reports of Interest
Bill Kobren

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued four new reports of potential interest:

  • GAO-23-105612 Information and Communications Technology: DOD Needs to Fully Implement Foundational Practices to Manage Supply Chain Risks – According to the GAO, “IT and communications technologies use parts and services from around the globe. Emerging threats in the supply chain for these technologies can put federal agencies—including DOD—at risk. For example, communications hardware with compromised components could lead to the loss of sensitive data. Of our practices for managing agency-wide supply chain risks, DOD addressed 4 and partially addressed the other 3. Specifically, DOD still needs to update and finalize an agency-wide strategy and implement processes for reviewing potential suppliers and detecting counterfeits. We recommended committing to a time frame for addressing these issues.”

  • GAO-23-106205 Advanced Pilot Trainer: Program Success Hinges on Better Managing Its Schedule and Providing Oversight – According to the GAO, “the Air Force has been using the same aircraft to train pilots for over 60 years, even as military plane designs have evolved. A new system of modern training jets and simulators is in the works, but is nearly a decade behind initial plans. Also, the Air Force's delivery schedule for the new training system isn't realistic. The schedule doesn't account for the risk of developing, testing, and building the system at the same time. And while the Air Force usually oversees production through its contracting processes, it can't do so because the planes currently being built aren't yet under contract. Our recommendations address these issues.”

  • GAO-23-106011 Missile Defense: Annual Goals Unmet for Deliveries and Testing – According to the GAO, “the Department of Defense's Missile Defense Agency develops systems to detect attacks and track, intercept, and destroy missiles in flight. Every year, MDA sets goals for the systems it plans to deliver to the military and the tests it plans to conduct. We found that MDA did not meet these goals in FY 2022. The agency didn't deliver all of its planned interceptors and radar upgrades. MDA also didn't complete its planned flight, ground, or cyber tests for its systems. We've made a number of recommendations in past reports that could help MDA meet its annual goals.”

  • GAO-23-106811 Artificial Intelligence: Key Practices to Help Ensure Accountability in Federal Use – According to the GAO, “artificial intelligence is a rapidly evolving technology that presents operational and workforce challenges for the federal government. We testified on our key practices for the responsible use of AI in federal agencies. The practices are organized around four principles—governance, data, performance, and monitoring. For example, "monitoring" calls for agencies to ensure AI systems remain reliable and relevant over time. Also, there is a severe shortage of federal staff with AI expertise. We previously reported on experts' opinions about establishing a new digital services academy—similar to the military academies—to train future workers.” The key takeaway: “Artificial intelligence (AI) is evolving at a rapid pace and the federal government cannot afford to be reactive to its complexities, risks, and societal consequences.”