Fraud


A GAO report ( www.gao.gov/new.items/d02676t.pdf ) on the use of purchase cards at the Education, Navy, Agriculture, Interior and Transportation departments reveals internal control weaknesses permitted thousands of unauthorized or questionable transactions between 1998 and 2001, involving potentially millions of dollars in waste and abuse. The watchdog agency discovered failures to follow purchasing guidelines, inadequate card-usage training and oversight and, at some agencies, outright fraud. To prevent further losses, the GAO recommends improved management scrutiny of purchase-card transactions (in fiscal year 2001, 400,000 employees from about 60 federal agencies spent nearly $14 billion) and increased training for participating employees.

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