The DHS Office of Inspector General review of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data indicated that from January 1, 2016, through June 30, 2019, 83 CBP employees violated CBP policies and guidance by posting or commenting within various social media platforms including I’m 10-15.
However, OIG found no evidence that senior CBP leaders were aware of more than a few of the 83 employees’ cases. OIG determined CBP and Border Patrol headquarters officials took no action to prevent further misconduct, except when directed to do so by DHS. In contrast, Office of Field Operations (OFO) headquarters officials issued guidance to remind OFO employees of acceptable use of social media.
With regard to the posts media outlets published in July 2019, OIG found no evidence that senior CBP headquarters or field leaders were aware of them until they were made public by the media.
OIG also found some senior leaders questioned the legality or the application of CBP policies, which may undermine CBP’s ability to enforce the policies.
Members of Congress asked OIG to initiate this review in response to July 2019 media reports that Border Patrol employees posted offensive content on a private Facebook group, I’m 10-15, and that CBP and Border Patrol senior leaders were members of the group.
OIG made two recommendations that the Commissioner ensure uniform application of policies related to social media, and establish social media training for new recruits and annual refresher training for all CBP employees. CBP concurred with the recommendations.