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Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education—Commission should further strengthen Arizona Family College Savings Program (529 program) oversight and better protect its confidential and sensitive electronic data


The Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education (Commission) administers the Arizona Family College Savings Program (529 program), which is a tax-advantaged college savings program that allows individuals to save for future educational expenses. The Commission has a Family College Savings Program Oversight Committee (Oversight Committee), which monitors and assesses the performance of Arizona’s 529 program providers. The Commission also administers financial aid programs, provides information about Arizona’s higher education opportunities, and leads a state-wide collaboration to increase Arizona high school students’ participation in higher education. We found that the Commission and Oversight Committee should further strengthen 529 program oversight, including enhancing the annual review of 529 providers and ensuring compliance with contractual and statutory requirements. The Commission also obtains and stores confidential and sensitive data for financial aid applicants and 529 program participants. We found that the Commission should take steps to better protect confidential and sensitive electronic data by eliminating unnecessary staff access to this data, strengthening its agreements with external entities that store its data and provide information technology (IT) services, and requiring IT security reports demonstrating that the data is secure.

Follow-Up Report

Additional Documents

Additional Documents