Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General

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U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General
Agency overview
TypeInspector General Office
Annual budget$214.9m USD (FY 2023)
Agency executives
  • Joseph V. Cuffari, Inspector General
  • Glenn Sklar, Principal Deputy Inspector General
  • Gladys Ayala, Deputy Inspector General, Integrity
  • Sarah Nelson, Deputy Inspector General, Innovation
  • Bruce Miller, Deputy Inspector General, Audits
  • Kristen Fredricks, Deputy Inspector General, External Affairs
  • James Izzard, Deputy Inspector General, Investigations
  • Louise McGlathery, Deputy Inspector General, Management
  • Tom Kait, Deputy Inspector General, Inspections and Evaluations
Parent departmentU.S. Department of Homeland Security
Child agencies
  • OIG Office of Inspections and Evaluations
  • OIG Office of Management
  • OIG Office of Investigations
  • OIG Office of Audits
  • OIG Office of External Affairs
  • OIG Office of Integrity
  • OIG Office of Innovation

The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General was established along with the Department of Homeland Security itself in 2002 by the Homeland Security Act. Its website describes its mission as "supervis[ing] independent audits, investigations, and inspections of the programs and operations of DHS, and recommends ways for DHS to carry out its responsibilities in the most effective, efficient, and economical manner possible."[1]


The United States Congress enacted the Inspector General Act of 1978 to ensure integrity and efficiency in government. The Homeland Security Act of 2002, as amended, established an Office of Inspector General (OIG) in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The Inspector General is appointed by the President and subject to Senate confirmation.

The Inspector General is responsible for conducting and supervising audits, investigations, and inspections relating to the programs and operations of the DHS. The OIG is to examine, evaluate and, where necessary, critique these operations and activities, recommending ways for the Department to carry out its responsibilities in the most effective, efficient, and economical manner possible.

The office's mission is "to serve as an independent and objective inspection, audit, and investigative body to promote effectiveness, efficiency, and economy in the Department of Homeland Security's programs and operations, and to prevent and detect fraud, abuse, mismanagement, and waste in such programs and operations."

List of Inspectors General[edit]

In addition, Jennifer L. Costello has claimed the role of Acting Inspector General of Homeland Security (2019).[7][8] Inspector General Cuffari has described this as Costello "falsely [holding] herself out as Acting Inspector General" from June 11 to July 25, 2019, in a letter describing that she is "no longer employed by the DHS Office of Inspector General".[9] Costello believes she "has been retaliated against for trying to denounce Cuffari’s mismanagement and wrongdoing."[10]


Charles K. Edwards[edit]

Charles K. Edwards, who served as acting DHS inspector general from 2011 through 2013 during the years of Barack Obama’s presidency, resigned in December 2013 following allegations of abuse of power, withholding documents, misspending of funds, nepotism, and making his staff do his homework for his Ph.D.[11][12] It was also alleged that he routinely shared drinks and dinner with department leaders and gave them inside information about the timing and findings of investigations, according to the report from an oversight panel of the Homeland Security and Government Operations Committee.[13]

Claire McCaskill, chair of the FCO Subcommittee, stated in her report to the Senate: "The Subcommittee found that Mr. Edwards jeopardized the independence of the Office of the Inspector General and that he abused agency resources."[14]

On March 6, 2020 Edwards was indicted by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). A federal grand jury returned a 16-count indictment against Edwards, alleging he stole both proprietary software and confidential databases from the United States government, part of a scheme to defraud the government.[11][15][16]

Sono Patel[edit]

On April 4, 2019, Sono Patel, a former federal technology manager with DHS-OIG, admitted to conspiring with a former acting inspector general of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, believed to be Charles K. Edwards, to steal a database managing more than 150,000 internal investigations and containing personal data of nearly 250,000 DHS employees.[17] From October 2014 until 2017, Patel admitted to using her position within the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General to access and create copies of EDS’s source code, the investigative database used by DHS-OIG, and also containing personal identifying information of DHS and Postal Service employees, so as to provide to Edwards. Their intent was to develop a private, commercial version of EDS to sell back to the U.S. government.[18]


  1. ^ "What We Do". OIG website. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  2. ^ "Skinner retires as DHS inspector general". Federal News Network. January 14, 2011. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  3. ^ a b Dennett, Lydia (March 13, 2014). "Department of Homeland Security Finally Has a Permanent IG". Project On Government Oversight. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  4. ^ Davidson, Joe (May 6, 2019). "Terrorism, immigration efforts hampered by Homeland Security vacancies". Washington Post. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  5. ^ "DHS | Homeland Security Newswire". (Press release). Retrieved March 8, 2019.
  6. ^ "John V. Kelly" (PDF). Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  7. ^ a b Heckman, Jory (June 11, 2019). "DHS acting inspector general resigns earlier than expected after office pulled 'feel good' reports". Federal News Network. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  8. ^ Costello, Jennifer (July 2, 2019). "OIG-19-51 - Management Alert - DHS Needs to Address Dangerous Overcrowding" (PDF). Retrieved July 19, 2019.
  9. ^ Cuffari, Joseph (June 16, 2020). "Inspector General Cuffari finds that a high-level official at DHS OIG falsely held herself out as Acting Inspector General in 2019" (PDF). Retrieved February 3, 2021.
  10. ^ Miroff, Nick (March 18, 2020). "DHS inspector general's office nearly dormant under Trump as reports and audits plummet". Washington Post. Retrieved February 3, 2021.
  11. ^ a b Naham, Matt (March 6, 2020). "Former Obama Admin Acting DHS Inspector General Indicted on Theft, Fraud Charges". Law & Crime. Archived from the original on March 6, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  12. ^ "DHS Inspector General Nominee Gets Warm Welcome in Senate". National Journal. Retrieved June 10, 2019.
  13. ^ Leonnig, Carol D. (April 24, 2014). "Probe: DHS watchdog cozy with officials, altered reports as he sought top job". Washington Post.
  14. ^ "US Senate Subcommittee on Financial and Contracting Oversight". Retrieved April 24, 2014.
  15. ^ Lynch, Sarah N. (March 6, 2020). "Ex-inspector general at U.S. Department of Homeland Security indicted for stealing govt property". Reuters. Archived from the original on March 6, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  16. ^ "Former Acting Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Indicted on Theft of Government Property and Scheme to Defraud the United States Government". United States Department of Justice. March 6, 2020. Archived from the original on March 6, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  17. ^ "Privacy Incident Involving DHS OIG Case Management System (Update)". Department of Homeland Security. January 18, 2018. Retrieved June 10, 2019.
  18. ^ Spencer S. Hsu (April 5, 2019) [2019-04-04]. "DHS tech manager admits stealing data on 150,000 internal investigations, nearly 250,000 workers". The Washington Post. Washington, D.C. ISSN 0190-8286. OCLC 1330888409.[please check these dates]

External links[edit]