NPR Story
12:50 pm
Mon March 25, 2013

Report: One Third Of DHS IT Projects Falling Short Of Schedule And Cost

Approximately one-third of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) major Information Technology systems, or projects, are not meeting costs or schedule commitments, according to a report released by the Government Accountability Office.

IT systems are integral to DHS' mission of national security. The 21 investments seeing shortfalls run the gauntlet of DHS departments including Customs Border Protections and Transportation Security Administration, for a total of $1 billion.

The main reasons stated for these scheduled shortfalls are inaccurate preliminary cost and schedule estimates and technical issues in the development phase.

Some of these investments make up critical parts of the nation's security infrastructure. For example, CBP's Land Border Integration Investment is used for scanning license plates. But the project came in more than two months late because of wireless interference at certain sites during deployment.

IT spending accounts for 15 percent of DHS’ total budget. The GAO report recommends more oversight in directing appropriate officials to address current shortcomings.

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