Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor
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Legislative Audit Commission

Minutes

December 7, 2005

Members Present:

Representative Lyndon Carlson Senator David Hann
Representative Sondra Erickson Senator Warren Limmer
Representative Rick Hansen Senator James Metzen
Representative Ruth Johnson Senator Ann Rest
Representative Aaron Peterson Senator Claire Robling
Representative Connie Ruth        
Representative Tim Wilkin  

Members Absent:

Representative Torrey Westrom Senator Richard Cohen
  Senator Sheila Kiscaden
  Senator Thomas Neuville

The Legislative Audit Commission meeting was called to order by Senator Ann Rest, Chair, at 10:05 a.m. in Room 10 of the State Office Building.  The purpose of the meeting was two-fold:  1) to review the Financial Audit Division’s report on Office of Enterprise Technology Mainframe Security and 2) a general discussion of computer security in state government. 

Senator Rest introduced Jim Nobles, Legislative Auditor.  Mr. Nobles gave an overview of the scope of the report and then introduced Chris Buse, the Information Technology Manager from the Financial Audit Division. 

Mr. Buse reviewed the results of the mainframe security audit, which assessed the adequacy of controls designed to protect the integrity and confidentiality of data.  The report concluded that the mainframe data was vulnerable to loss, tampering, and unauthorized disclosure.  Insufficient security planning was stated as the crux of the problem.  In addition, the report noted that funding for security issues was weak, and there were too few security professionals.  Security professionals are in high demand and the state’s pay scales for these positions are inadequate. 

Senator Rest invited Mr. Gopal Khana the Chief Information Officer for the Office of Enterprise Technology (OET) to discuss the current security initiatives by the department.  Mr. Khana stated that OET is committed to maintaining a secure environment through a combination of sound security policies and rigorous administration of those policies. 

Senator Rest thanked Mr. Khana for his update and, since Senator Rest had another commitment, turned the meeting over to Senator Claire Robling to chair. 

The focus of the meeting moved to a discussion from Mary Ellison, who is the Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety.  Ms. Ellison gave an update on the progress of the web-based motor vehicle registration renewal system.  She acknowledged that the system is not yet up and running, but they plan to have an outside consultant do a final security check on the system before implementation. 

Senator Robling thanked Ms. Ellison for the update and, with no further opinions or discussion, the meeting was adjourned at 11:50 a.m.

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Senator Ann H. Rest, Chair

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Mary Moser, Acting Recording Secretary

 

Office of the Legislative Auditor ♦ Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155