Report Summary

Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General

November 2008

Fiscal Year 2008 Inspector General Statement on the Social Security Administration’s Major Management and Performance Challenges




To provide a summary and assessment of the most serious management and performance challenges facing the Social Security Administration (SSA).


The Reports Consolidation Act of 2000 requires that Inspectors General (IG) provide a summary and assessment of the most serious management and performance challenges facing agencies and the progress in addressing these challenges.

For Fiscal Year (FY) 2008, the IG Statement focused on these six issues facing the Social Security Administration (SSA).
•Social Security number Protection
•Management of the Disability Process
•Improper Payments & Recovery of Overpayments
•Internal Control Environment and Performance Measures
•Systems Security and Critical Infrastructure Protection
•Service Delivery and Electronic Government

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Our Findings

While progress was made during FY 2008 in addressing these challenges, some improvements are still needed.  For example, SSA needs to

•Work with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to help resolve vulnerabilities we identified with the E-Verify program, which is a joint initiative between SSA and DHS that assists employers in verifying the employment eligibility of newly hired employees.
•Establish a performance accountability process that allows administrative law judge performance to be addressed when it falls below an acceptable level.
•Achieve a balance between stewardship and service, ensuring that it conducts an adequate number of medical and work-related continuing disability reviews. 
•Ensure controls to protect personal identifiable information are fully developed and implemented in accordance with Office of Management and Budget guidance.
•Overcome several challenges to meet its Internet services goals including increasing its use, implementing planned enhancements, and developing appropriate authentication measures tailored to each electronic application.

The Office of Inspector General will continue to focus on these issues in FY 2009.

Our Recommendation

No recommendations are included in this report.