Brief History Of Us Security Clearance
The authority for classifying information and granting security clearance is found in Executive Orders âmost recently in EO 13526. The origins of security clearance stem from the Pendleton Act of 1883, which required that federal job applicants possess character, reputation, and trustworthiness, in part to prevent nepotism. In 1941, EO 8781 would require federal employees to be fingerprinted and FBI-investigated, and in 1948 EO 9835 required military personnel to adhere to these standards. In 1953 the order expanded to include most federal employees.
Why Does It Take So Long To Get A Security Clearance
Some security clearance determinations are made relatively quickly. Others may take a year or more. For these cases part of the answer involves the applicant and requires a better understanding of the process. There are three phases to clearance processing: 1) application, 2) investigation, and 3) adjudication. In the past most clearance delays occurred during the investigation phase. Due primarily to a significant increase in the number of investigators, the average time for investigations has been significantly reduced. Today most of the delays in getting a clearance occur in the application phase and the adjudication phase. The problems that cause these delays are:
- A brief description of the records you are seeking
- Any other information that you feel may help in searching for records pertaining to you.
- The address where you would like the records sent.
In addition, you must provide a notarized statement or an unsworn declaration made in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format:
If executed outside the United States: I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on . .
If executed within the United States, its territories, possessions, or commonwealths: I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on . .
Activating Your Nsvs Portal Account And Submitting Your Security Questionnaire
This section is not applicable to applicants undergoing an Accreditation Check.
Guidance on how to activate your NSVS Portal account, access, complete and submit your security questionnaire, submit a change of personal circumstances and submit an aftercare incident report can be found in UKSV National Security Vetting Solution: guidance for subjects.
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Automatic Disqualifiers For Security Clearances
So how many things can automatically disqualify you from a clearance? Just one thing: being an ongoing drug user or addict.
Passed in 2008, the Bond Amendment prohibits drug users from holding security clearances. You can find more about the Bond Amendment in Appendix B of the Adjudicative Guidelines.
Under the Bond Amendment, adjudicators must find you are a current unlawful user of a controlled substance or addicted to a controlled substance to disqualify you from a clearance.
Heres how the Bond Amendment defines an addiction:
- Habitual use of a narcotic drug in a way that endangers public morals, health, safety or welfare
- Loss of self-control over an addiction
Under the Bond Amendment, applicants classified as drug users or addicts can not receive a security clearance waiver.
If you formerly used controlled substances but are not a current user or addict, make sure you disclose this information on your security clearance application.
Like everything else in your life, security clearance adjudicators might consider this as they vet your whole person for a clearance, but it will not automatically disqualify you.
What Is A Security Clearance
A security clearance is an authorization by the federal government which states that the agency permits an individual to access classified or sensitive security information. Different roles may require different levels of security clearance. For example, an analyst might have one level of security clearance, while an investigator might require a more advanced level due to the nature of their work. While certain federal employees and contractors need a security clearance to do their work, some private-sector employers require a security clearance as well.
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What Are The Program Requirements
- You MUST have U.S. Citizenship
- Attend an Introduction to Clearances workshop
- And attend two additional Clearance Ready events per semester, such as:
- Employer panel discussions on careers that require a clearance
- Workshops on strategies to effectively complete required forms
- Discussions on what is evaluated in a background investigation
- Or call 703-993-2370 to make an appointment with your career advisor
NOTE: The Clearance Ready program DOES NOT issue a clearance. The only way to obtain a clearance is by first receiving a job offer for a cleared position. The employer sponsors the clearance process. Individuals are not able to purchase their own clearances.
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How To Land A Cleared Job Without An Active Clearance
If youre interested in a defense or intelligence job that requires a security clearance, but you dont have one, theres good news. It is possible to get hired without a clearance, provided the company is able and willing to sponsor you. There may be a contingent offer that is made, while you go through the initial clearance process. This means the start of employment may be contingent upon obtaining at least an interim clearance eligibility.
Of course, your chances of being hired increase if you have in-demand skills. Software developers, engineers, and those with proficiency in foreign languages, for example, are highly sought after and, therefore, are more likely to get hired for cleared jobs despite not having an active clearance. There are measures you can take to better your odds no matter what your skill set is.
Understand the procedures, advises Mike Hensley, Leidos Security Service Center Manager. Know the security clearance process, and the potential restrictions hiring managers may have with candidates who dont have a clearance.
As most cleared positions are direct work on a contract, many hiring managers dont have a capacity to place a new hire on overhead while waiting for the clearance process.
And what will you do in the meantime, prior to obtaining an active clearance? Some programs have the ability for employees to perform unclassified work that still supports the contract, explains Hensley.
Length Of Security Clearance Effectiveness
As mentioned above, there are different term lengths for security clearances. Confidential clearance lasts for 15 years, secret clearance has a 10-year time period, and top-secret personnel can expect to be reviewed every five years.
People working with sensitive compartmentalized information are top secret level clearance personnel, so they will have their clearance reviewed every five years. But their particular project may be valid for less time.
Individuals with interim security clearances can expect to be in this category for a short period, usually a matter of weeks or months. Then they will either be approved or denied their official level of security clearance.
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Periodic Reinvestigations And Continuous Vetting
A key aspect of Trusted Workforce 2.0 reforms is the move from episodic reinvestigations of security clearance eligibility to a continuous vetting model. There are currently approximately 2.2 million individuals enrolled in the Department of Defense continuous vetting program. As the National Background Investigation System continues to move forward and the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency overhauls the IT that underpins the personnel security program, we can expect enrollment in the governments continuous vetting system to meet full enrollment. Currently, requirements for periodic reinvestigations are still on the books, but with CV accomplishing the same thing, in the future clearance holders may want to establish their CV status before they leave a cleared job and look to jump into another.
The good news is that regardless of policy changes concerning CV and periodic reinvestigations, having held a clearance previously is still a major advantage, even if your prior clearance has expired. And with clearance processing times seeing significant improvement, it can now take just a matter of days or weeks to obtain an interim security clearance.
Appealing Denial Of A Top Secret Security Clearance
According to DCSAs appeal page, contractors, employees and military members have a right to appeal a security clearance denial or revocation.
Executive Order 12968 governs the process for military and civilian members, while Executive Order 10865 explains the rights of contractors. Normally, DOHA handles contractor appeals, while the Personnel Security Appeals Board handles security clearance appeals for military members and civilian employees.
Denied a clearance and confused about how to appeal? DCSA advises applicants that speaking with your agencys or companys security office is the way to find out what specific processes apply to you.
No process is perfect, which is why an appeals process exists.
Whether you are a new hire or an existing clearance holder, ensure your security office explains your rights after a denial or revocation.
The executive orders and guidelines are clear that every individual denied a security clearance has a right to appeal the denial.
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Will A Massage Turned Prostitution Event Have A Happy Ending For This Clearance Applicant
JohnnyDoe writes: During the pandemic, I went to a massage parlor for prostitution twice in the recent year but stopped. I dont know how much of an issue it is if I only ever went twice in my entire life during a time everyone has been isolated for a quite a while. I have never engaged in prostitution before, nor do I find myself doing so in the future. My college doctor knows as well as only one close friend. This happened in California. How much of an issue is this when it comes to blackmail? And will this negate me from having a security clearance especially for the polygraph test.
Read the full article here.
Interim Eligibility Pending Approval
The duration of the entire investigation and review will vary, but the average length of time is 120 days. However, in some cases, it may be possible to get an interim security clearance and start work in a temporary capacity until the background check process is complete.
According to the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency , all applicants for a personnel security clearance submitted by a cleared contractor will be considered for interim eligibility. The Personnel Security Management Office for Industry reviews the Personnel Security Questionnaire and other files and systems.
Interim eligibility is issued only when access to classified information is clearly consistent with the national security interests of the United States. It is issued at the same time as the initiation of the investigation and will generally remain in effect until the investigation is completed. At that time, the applicant is considered for final eligibility.
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Can I Have Two Cacs At Once
One ClearanceJobsBlog subscriber writes:
Does anyone have experience with or know of a contractor supporting work at two separate agencies at the same clearance level? This is work as a Contractor, not a government employee . All work would be completed under one company. Hoping to be able to use separate CACs with separate contractor emails and access.
Read the full article here.
Whatever 2023 brings, know that ClearanceJobsBlog will remain a key source for information about the security clearance process and the best place to bring your security clearance career or background investigation questions.
Getting A Top Secret Security Clearance Reinstated After A Period Of Inactivity
A security clearance lapsing because of a break in employment or other change in your status is not the same as being denied a clearance. If you have a period of inactivity, you may have to undergo a new background investigation.
The government grants security clearances on an as-needed basis. In some cases, your security clearance might become inactive if you no longer need access to national security information or are changing jobs.
Alternatively, depending on the organization, how long your clearance was inactive and the length of time since your last background check, your new organization might be able to reactivate your existing clearance. Your security manager will guide you on what you need to do to reinstate your clearance.
You can read more about active, inactive and interim clearances here.
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Jobs For Veterans With Security Clearance
Veterans or soon to be service members with security clearance can hold an advantage in the job market when transitioning to civilian life and are seeking employment. There are multitudes of employers such as government agencies and commercial defense that are actively looking to find employees that have current security clearance positions. The skillsets of these in-demand positions can vary greatly but include programming, engineering, intelligence, accounting & finance, overseas careers and many more career opportunities.
Hiring veterans with security clearance is also in the best interest of employers as well. The investigation and background check stage for a security clearance can take anywhere from a few months all the way to over a year to be completed and can be costly to employers. There can be hundreds of thousands of background investigations that are pending security clearance backlogged at any given time. Most employers cannot afford to wait this long. For these reasons, recruiters and hiring managers many times actively seek out qualified veterans that possess security clearance.
Who Needs A Security Clearance
Most federal government positions require some type of security clearance. The job description or posting might indicate the level of clearance required or that a candidate needs to pass a background check before they can begin to work. Some private-sector employers require a security clearance because of the type of work they do, such as IT management and financial services.
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Security Clearance Application Process
There are 3-5 major stages of the security clearance application process:
This entails a federal agency determining whether or not a candidates job description requires granting them access to sensitive information. If its required, then a candidate will need to fill out and submit the SF-86 form, which ushers in the second stage Investigation.
The US government clearance sponsoring agency chooses an investigator that will use the candidates filled out SF-86 form as the starting point to dig into their background. The duration of this investigation is based upon the required security clearance level. If no red flags arise during the investigation, then the candidate can proceed to the third stage Adjudication.
This is the phase when the sponsoring federal agency needs to make a decision regarding whether or not to grant security clearances to their respective candidates. The decision is determined by the candidates verified information during the investigation stage. If a candidate is granted a security clearance, this is the end of the security clearance application process. There are two additional potential stages of this process, depending upon an individuals circumstance.
How To Filter Results By Security Clearance
You can filter your search results by the type of security clearance the job requires. Read the Security Clearance section in each job announcement to find out the required security clearance to understand whats required.
Your search results will update automatically as you select each filter.
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Police Certificate And Ircc Requirements
You must provide a police certificate when you apply for permanent residence in Canada and for some temporary residence programs .
If you apply for criminal rehabilitation, temporary resident permit, and authority to return to Canada , you must provide state certificates as well as an Identity History Summary issued by the Federal Bureau of Investigation .
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Who Grants Security Clearances
Varying United States government agencies grant security clearances, most commonly the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, Department of Justice, Department of Energy, and Central Intelligence Agency. In fact, the U.S. Department of Defense issues more than 80% of security clearances.
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Federal Employment Fitness Investigation
The requirements for a Fitness investigation are exactly the same as a Suitability investigation. The only difference is that Fitness investigations are conducted on new excepted service federal employees and these investigations can involve different adjudicative criteria and procedures than Suitability investigations. These investigations are also conduct on federal contractor personnel being considered for Public Trust positions or PIV cards required by HSPD-12. Within DoD a PIV is called a Common Access Card .
Facility Security Clearances
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