Office of Inspector General
WHAT IS THE OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL?
Each federal agency has an Office of Inspector General (OIG) that provides independent oversight of the agency’s programs and operations. The office is responsible for promoting efficiency and effectiveness in agency programs and for preventing and detecting fraud, waste, and abuse. By statute, the NSF OIG is independent from the agency, with the IG reporting directly to the National Science Board and the Congress. We consult NSF in developing our plans and obtain agency feedback on reports before they are issued. Semiannually, the OIG submits a summary report of its activities to the Congress, National Science Board, and NSF.
To promote efficiency and effectiveness, we assess internal controls, financial management, information technology, and other systems that affect the operation of NSF programs. By identifying individuals who attempt to abuse the public trust or defraud government programs, the OIG also enforces integrity in agency operations. Our office is staffed with auditors, investigators, attorneys, scientists, and other specialists. Close working relationships with NSF and its awardees help us focus our efforts on priority areas and facilitate our proactive educational efforts.
HOW DOES AN OIG CONTRIBUTE TO GOOD GOVERNMENT?
- Offer analysis and advice on critical government-wide initiatives, such as computer security, program performance, workforce planning, and financial management.
- Look independently at problems and recommend solutions.
- Issue factual reports based on professional auditing, investigative, and evaluation standards.
- Investigate fraud, misuse of funds, and other violations of laws and regulations.
- Provide technical and consultative advice as the agency develops new plans.
- Maintain a hotline for reporting confidential information on fraud and abuse.
Office of Inspector General Update:
Recent news articles have raised some concern about the security of the online complaint process used to report fraud, waste, and abuse to more than two dozen OIG hotlines, including NSF OIG. NSF OIG has swiftly addressed the issue raised to ensure the security and confidentiality of this process. Please be advised that we are unaware of any actual security compromise to information that has been reported through the system.