The Government Accountability Office (GAO) said in a new report that the Treasury Department’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service still has a lot of work to do in addressing previous GAO recommendations that the bureau improves information system control deficiencies.

The Fiscal Service Bureau manages the Schedules of the General Fund, which reports the Federal government’s trillions of dollars of cash activity, and the government’s budget deficit.  The Fiscal Service also oversees the Schedule of Federal Debt.

In 2020, GAO flagged the Bureau of Fiscal Service for information control deficiencies – both older ones and newly discovered problems – relating to access controls, configuration management, and other areas.

In its new report, GAO said that as of September 2021, many of the information system control problems it had identified in prior reports remained “unresolved … representing a significant deficiency in Fiscal Service’s internal control over financial reporting.”

GAO said it didn’t identify any new problems in its latest audit, but said the Fiscal Service Bureau had only taken action to resolve one of its 24 recommendations from previous audits.

“Fiscal Service’s corrective actions were still in progress for 23 open recommendations related to security management, access controls, and configuration management,” GAO said of the latest examination.

“These continuing information system control deficiencies, which collectively represent a significant deficiency, increase the risk of unauthorized access to, modification of, or disclosure of sensitive data and programs and disruption of critical operations,” the watchdog agency said.

“Fiscal Service mitigated the potential effect of these deficiencies on financial reporting for fiscal year 2021 with compensating management and reconciliation controls designed to detect potential misstatements on the Schedule of Federal Debt,” GAO said.

Read More About
More Topics
John Curran
John Curran
John Curran is MeriTalk's Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.