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Sié Chéou-Kang CenterPrivate Security Monitor

Guarding a water station.

U.S. Government Research & Oversight

USAID Office of Inspector General

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is an independent agency that provides economic, development and humanitarian assistance around the world in support of the foreign policy goals of the United States. To carry out its mission, USAID often operates in countries recovering from conflicts or disasters, and contracts with other U.S. agencies, international organizations, and the private sector to provide assistance and aid. These entities, called "implementing partners" by the USAID, often procure security services from private companies to assist with operations in complex environments. Thus, USAID does not usually maintain any direct contracts with PMSCs, and implementing partners have primary oversight responsibilities for their security providers. Nevertheless, in managing its contracts and grant agreements, USAID has some degree of oversight and authority over private security activities. 

Because most of USAID's development programs are implemented by external actors, one of the most important forms of oversight occurs after security services have been rendered. This is done through surveys, audits, and reviews conducted by the USAID Office of Inspector General (USAID OIG). It is the responsibility of the USAID OIG to detect and prevent fraud and violations of law and to promote efficiency and effectiveness in USAID operations. While the USAID OIG staff conducts performance audits, it contracts with the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) to conduct financial audits of USAID activities implemented by U.S. contractors.

In addition to publishing its audit and investigatory findings, the USAID OIG also testifies before Congress about its work.

Surveys, Audits, and Reviews

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