The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — The FBI uses old technology and workers without enough training to do security checks on people applying for citizenship and other immigration benefits, a government audit found.

The problems have led to large backlogs in name checks and are affecting people wanting to naturalize, become legal residents or bringing in foreign workers for businesses, said the audit issued Monday by the Justice Department’s inspector general Glenn Fine.

“While the FBI is taking steps to address these deficiencies, the name check process can result in lengthy delays and the risk of inadequate information,” Fine said.

His audit praised the FBI’s work on fingerprint checks, saying it is mostly automated, uses an experienced, well-trained work force and can process millions of fingerprint requests accurately and on time.

The FBI’s biggest customer for name and fingerprint checks is the Department of Homeland’s Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services division, which processes citizenship, legal resident and other immigration applications.

The FBI received 4 million name check requests in fiscal year 2007, more than 2 million from Citizenship and Immigration Services. It also processes about 21 million fingerprint checks a year, more than 3.2 million from the agency, Fine’s audit said.

The FBI completes about 86 percent of its name check requests within 60 days, but the remaining 14 percent can take from several months to more than a year. Some are pending more than three years, the auditor found. The FBI had 327,000 name checks pending as of this past March.

Fine criticized the FBI for using an outdated system that matches submitted names to the FBI’s index of names in its investigative files. The FBI missed opportunities to improve its “antiquated” systems by failing to raise its fees for name checks for 17 years, Fine said.

In a news release, the FBI emphasized other findings by Fine: it completed nearly 97 percent of all name checks submitted in the last five years and nearly 90 percent were completed within 120 days. Also, the FBI reduced the backlog by completing more name checks than it received in fiscal years 2004, 2005 and 2007.

The FBI blamed much of the backlog on a decision by Citizenship and Immigration Services to recheck 2.7 million names after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

5 Responses to “Auditor Blames FBI’s Systems for Immigration Delay”
  1. Eddie B. says:

    Well let’s give Halliburton a sole source award for a new immigration system….

  2. jo says:

    The FBI blamed much of the backlog on a decision by Citizenship and Immigration Services to recheck 2.7 million names after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

    citizenship and immigration services……..WTF…….the citizenship part refers to you and me. maybe if they stopped trying to crawl up our butts they could do the job that we pay them to do.

  3. Angel says:

    Old technology…..yeah right. Just another excuse . I bet they don’t have a backlog at all.

  4. Vincent Narodnik says:

    It is charactaristic of the Modern Mind to always avoid placing blame on anyONE, and to seek to find causation in a maladjustment in a “system”, which the Modern will always propose a quick fix of a touch of grease here and a boatload of grant money there.
    Moderns are MachineMen to the core. Lets call them Hobbes Children and have done with it.
    One day, when the scales have fallen off of our eyes, we might want to seek causation in the determined lawlessness that exists in the lawbreaker.
    This can happen only when we stop allowing ourselves to be governed by snakes, and the spiders who do their bidding.

  5. George says:

    hEADS UP:Rep Dennis Kucinich submitted a resolution to Impeach pres Bush.And Just yeaturday posted about juat that sying if the good politicions were realy good why dont they Impeach Bush maybe Dennis read my post.this is great news.

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