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Semiannual Report to the Congress (October 1, 2023- March 31, 2024)


Message from the Deputy Inspector General

I am pleased to submit to Congress our Semiannual Report for the period of October 1, 2023, through March 31, 2024.

During this reporting period, we released 19 audit reports, including 13 contract audits, identifying more than $55.4 million in potential cost savings and recoveries for the federal government. In addition, our investigative and legal work yielded $63 million in monetary recoveries.

Notably, our office released an audit report that found GSA employees had misled a contracting officer with egregiously flawed information to acquire 150 Chinese-made videoconference cameras, in violation of the Trade Agreements Act (TAA) of 1979. These Chinese-made cameras presented known security vulnerabilities that required software updates. However, records indicated that some of these TAA-noncompliant cameras had not been updated and remained susceptible to these security concerns. Another audit found that the Public Buildings Service (PBS) was not properly assessing high-risk uses of space by federal law enforcement agencies, raising significant safety and security issues. For example, our audit found that detainees were transported through unsecure public pathways, and seized drugs were stored in evidence vaults that lacked proper ventilation. We determined that PBS is not always aware of the safety and security risks that certain activities pose to building tenants, visitors, and first responders and does not consistently take steps to mitigate these risks.

Our special agents concluded an 8-year long criminal investigation into allegations that a former U.S. Air Force employee and other individuals conspired in a bribery scheme that spanned more than a decade and involved more than $400 million in GSA contracts. This multi-agency effort resulted in more than $88 million in monetary recoveries and more than 34 years of combined incarceration for the defendants. Another investigation revealed that a government contractor fraudulently obtained over $1.9 million in Department of Defense set-aside contracts by falsely certifying his company as a service-disabled veteran owned small business in GSA’s System for Award Management, when in fact, he never even served in the military. He pled guilty to wire fraud and was sentenced to 15 months in prison and ordered to pay $72,000 in restitution and a $10,000 fine.

On January 16, 2024, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted an amended judgment in a qui tam case against Symantec Corporation and awarded the United States $16.1 million in damages and $36.8 million in civil penalties. This case was initiated based on a 2012 qui tam lawsuit alleging that Symantec had violated the False Claims Act in connection with its GSA contract to sell software and related items directly to federal purchasers.

These efforts would not have been possible without the dedicated men and women of the GSA OIG who seek to combat waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer dollars on a daily basis. I am honored to be leading this dedicated team of professionals in our important oversight endeavors and we all deeply appreciate the ongoing support of Congress and GSA management.

Robert C. Erickson 
Deputy Inspector General 
March 31, 2024