- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 4, 2003

Implementation of the FBI’s highly touted but often-criticized $458 million Trilogy antiterrorism computer system has been delayed by a contractor’s failure to meet a delivery date for essential software and equipment, the General Services Administration said yesterday.

The GSA said Computer Sciences Corp.’s (CSC) inability to deliver on time upgraded technology as the last of three phases of an FBI plan to transform its information capabilities with high-speed networks and state-of-the-art computers would delay efforts to make the Trilogy program fully operational.

Trilogy was designed to allow FBI field agents to receive case files at their desks and to link the bureau with various law enforcement agency databases. It has been termed critical in the FBI’s war against terrorism.

“CSC’s failure to meet its delivery date will prevent the FBI from fully deploying the third component … by Dec. 13,” the GSA said in a statement. “GSA is working with both CSC and the FBI to determine an immediate corrective course of action. In the interim, the FBI is continuing to train its 28,000 employees on all operational phases of the information technology upgrades.”

The delay was announced by the GSA’s Federal Systems Integration Management Center, which is the contracting agency. The first two phases of the FBI plan included the distribution of 21,000 new desktop computers, as well as new printers and scanners, and the deployment of the FBI’s state-of-the-art “Wide Area Network” to 595 sites. Those phases were completed this spring.

“CSC and the FBI are taking positive steps to address the causes of the program delays, and meetings are ongoing to schedule a new baseline for the program,” CSC said in a separate statement. “The FBI and CSC have stated that delays to date will not impact the FBI’s ability to search for data using the current analytical tools in place.”

Last month, the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General said the FBI had failed to make necessary information technology improvements to ensure it can guard effectively against terrorists who target the United States.

The Inspector General’s Office, in a 145-page report, said that while the FBI made some progress in correcting problems with outdated infrastructures, fragmented management, ineffective systems, inadequate training and computer security, more work was needed to guard against terrorists.

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