June 17, 2015   (c) Federal Times by: Aaron Boyd

Office of Personnel Management leaders got an earful Tuesday from the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, with agency heads and CIOs largely defending their records and trying to impress on committee members the unrelenting nature of modern cyberattacks.

Committee Chair Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, hit the agency hard with his criticisms: “The fact that OPM was breached should come as no surprise considering the agency’s security posture,” he said.

He predicted that during the hearing, “We’re going to hear, ‘We’re doing a good job.’ You’re not. You’re failing.”

The hearing comes two weeks after OPM announced a massive breach of its networks that compromised employee data on more than 4 million employees and an as-yet unknown number of background investigations.

More: Second OPM hack exposed highly personal background info

The Oversight Committee grilled executives and CIOs from OPM, Homeland Security, the Office of Management and Budget and Interior Department (which manages the data center that houses OPM servers) for almost three hours before adjourning to a classified briefing for more information.

OPM Director Katherine Archuleta was the lightning rod for most of the representatives’ questions, which centered on whether the breach could have been prevented with stronger security measures.

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