Doing Business with the General Accounting Office

Facts and Figures about the GAO<@VM>In Profile: Anthony Cicco, CIO of the General Accounting Office

GAO goals

Between 2002 and 2007, GAO likely will issues reports in the following

Effective system of justice

Physical infrastructure
Security threats
SIZE="2">Military capabilities and readiness
Advancement of U.S.
Global market forces
Progress toward results-oriented, accountable government

Financing of government

Address General Accounting Office <>
SIZE="2">441 G St. NW Washington, D.C. 20548 <>
SIZE="2">(202) 512-5500


Comptroller general: David Walker


What it does: GAO is an independent, nonpartisan agency,
often referred to as the watch dog for Congress. It studies how the federal government
spends money and advises Congress and federal agencies on what it finds, with recommended
actions if necessary. GAO evaluates programs, audits expenditures and issues legal

Major subagencies: Eleven offices throughout the


2003 budget
request: $458 million

2002 budget: $432 million
SIZE="2">2001 budget: $408 million


Report: VA Information Technology: Management Making
Important Progress in Addressing Key Challenges

Report Number: GAO-02-105

Released: Sept. 26

Report: Bureau of Public Debt: Areas for Improvement in
Computer Controls

Report Number: GAO-02-1082R

Released: Sept. 18

Report: Electronic Government: Proposal Addresses Critical

Report Number: GAO-02-1083T

Released: Sept. 18

Report: National Airspace System: Status of FAA's Standard
Terminal Automation Replacement System

Report Number: GAO-02-1071

Released: Sept. 17

Report: National Preparedness: Technology and Information
Sharing Challenges

Report Number: GAO-02-1048R

Released: Aug. 30

Report: Federal Reserve Banks: Areas for Improvement in
Computer Controls

Report Number: GAO-02-1018R

Released: Aug. 29

Report: FDIC Information Security: Improvements Made but
Weaknesses Remain

Report Number: GAO-02-689

Released: July 15

Report: Human Services: Federal Approval and Funding
Processes for States'

Information Systems

Report Number: GAO-02-347T

Released: July 9

Report: Executive Office of the President: Analysis of
Mandated Report on Key Information Technology Areas

Report Number: GAO-02-779R

Released: June 28


--The 2003 budget request includes $4 million for security and safety enhancements identified following Sept. 11 and the anthrax cases. Some of these include better building protection against biological and chemical attacks and more background checks and security clearances for GAO employees and contractors.

--Fraudulent activity now can be reported to GAO via the Internet. The agency maintains
FraudNET, a Web site that allows people to file a report and remain anonymous if they
wish. I pulled up the filing form with no problem.

--You can't exactly do business with GAO. Its main focus is to make sure federal agencies
are fulfilling their missions and spending taxpayers' money wisely. However, if you're new
to the federal market, it's a good idea to peruse GAO's Web site and become familiar with
its mission. I found helpful the "Help Using This Site"

link on the agency's Web page.

--GAO is unique in that its leader,
the comptroller general, holds the office for a 15-year term. Most of its employees are
career civil servants. These measures are for continuity and to maintain the agency's
independence for its investigative works. Comptroller General David Walker's term began in
October 1998 and will expire in October 2013.

Anthony Cicco, chief information officer, GAO

Took the job: Jan.
1, 2000

Hometown: Sharon, Pa.
Home now:
Annandale, Va.

Family: Wife Linda, daughters Monica and Katherine

Hobbies: Golf and home remodeling
Last book read:
"Ghost Soldiers: The Forgotten Epic Story of World War II's Most Dramatic
Mission" by Hampton Sides

Alma Mater: Bachelor's degree from
the University of Nebraska, master's degree from Cal State Long Beach

SIZE="2">What are the IT challenges the agency faces?
One of the
first is maintaining a sound security program internally and externally. Also,
demonstrating value to business by integrating our work more closely with business needs.

  What do you look for in companies with which you are thinking of doing business?
At the management level, the people I deal with must
have the customers' best interests in mind. I can sense quickly when their interests are
in maximizing revenue and customers' needs are secondary. I look for a level of integrity
that is focused on the customer, and obviously their technical skills.

SIZE="2">A year from now, where do you see the department's technology capabilities?

We continue to do a stepwise progression. A year from now, our overall,
24/7 availability -- anywhere anytime access -- also, worldwide remote access; essentially
our auditors will be able to travel throughout the world and stay connected. Those are the
two things I see we'll add to our portfolio in the next year.
are changing our infrastructure so downtime will be minimized. We're never on Eastern
Standard Time. This will allow us to shorten the window where systems maintenance is being
performed. A third [goal would be to] work with business units in putting systems together
that make a lot of sense. We are heavily involved with business process redesign.

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