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Examining On-Going Challenges at the U.S. Secret Service and their Government-wide Implications

Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management and the House Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency

Location: HVC-210, House Visitors Center

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Member Statements


A recent Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) report investigated U.S. Secret Service agents’ alleged violations of the Privacy Act, DHS policy, and Secret Service policy. The OIG determined that 45 Secret Service employees had accessed Congressman Jason Chaffetz’s personally identifiable information on an internal Secret Service database a total of 60 times.  In addition to illegally accessing Congressman Chaffetz’s personal information, some Secret Service employees may have disclosed potentially embarrassing employment information to the media.  Eighteen senior Secret Service executives who knew what was occurring failed to inform Director Clancy or stop the activity.

This hearing examined how a top federal law enforcement agency could fail to identify a series of unauthorized accesses of sensitive personal information. In light of the issues at the Secret Service, the Subcommittee also focused upon what is being done to protect the millions of individuals whose private information is housed on other federal government databases.