Background checks & security clearance for cleared engineering

Applying for a cybersecurity position with the federal government? Be prepared to go through a lot of paperwork. The government wants to make sure you’re a safe bet.

Government employees and federal contractors who need access to classified data must have a security clearance. Most people have heard of a “top secret” clearance, but it is one of several classifications of restricted information.

Candidates must demonstrate good character and sound judgment to obtain clearance at any level. Government agencies may deny permission for a number of reasons. According to the Congressional Research Service, about 4.3 million Americans hold security clearances.

Learn more about what a security clearance is, who needs it, and what you can expect from the process.

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Our military has information and technology that could aid our adversaries, and its unauthorized release could compromise our national security. Therefore, only select veterans, government officials, and companies are granted access to classified information or facilities by the federal government. In other words, “loose lips sink ships.”

What is a security clearance?

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Security clearance investigations are administered by the Department of Defense and are intended to ensure the ability to access national security information provided by the federal government. The investigation focuses on character and conduct, emphasizing factors such as honesty, trustworthiness, reliability, financial responsibility, credit, criminal activity, emotional stability, and other related areas.

What are the security clearance levels?

  • All classified information in the military is classified under these categories:
  • Confidential: Unauthorized disclosure may harm national security.
  • SECRETS: Unauthorized disclosure could seriously harm national security.
  • TOP SECRETS: Unauthorized disclosure could cause extraordinarily serious harm to national security.
  • Additionally, some classified information is so sensitive that even the additional security measures applied to top-secret information are not sufficient. This information is known as Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) or Special Access Program (SAP). Access to this information requires special SCI access or SAP approval.
  • The level of security clearance that military personnel and some civilian contractors require depends on their specific job and the information they need access to in order to perform their job. The US government will cover security clearance costs for military service members and government employees.

How do you get a military security clearance?

  • The security clearance and investigation process are usually completed in an average of 60 days and the process consists of the following three steps:
  • The individual is offered a new job or assignment that requires a security clearance and fills out a questionnaire to begin the investigation. The employer or sponsoring agency will decide what level of clearance is required for the position and the appropriate level of investigation will be required.
  • The individual is interrogated. All investigations over the past 10 years of an individual’s background consist of national records and credit checks. They may also include interviews with people who know the candidate. Determining whether to grant security clearance is based on these guidelines:
  • Loyalty to America
  • Foreign influence
  • Foreign Preference
  • sexual behavior
  • Personal behavior
  • Financial Considerations
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Drug involvement
  • Emotional, mental, and personality disorders
  • Criminal conduct
  • Security Breaches
  • External activities Misuse of information technology systems
  • A formal decision or decision is made at the conclusion of the investigation and the employer or sponsoring agency either grants or denies a security clearance.

What disqualifies you from security clearance?

When reviewing the guidelines for granting security clearance, there are a number of conditions that may raise security concerns and disqualify an applicant for security clearance. There are generally four main areas that are likely to raise security concerns during a security clearance investigation. These can be divided into the categories of contempt, criminal convictions resulting in a prison sentence of more than one year, drug addiction, and “criminal incompetence”.

In many cases, if a security clearance application is denied, applicants may be required to provide additional documents or information and may file a notice of appeal by submitting a written appeal brief. Written appeal briefs will be evaluated by the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals.

Do all military members have a security clearance?

A very important aspect of many federal service jobs within all five branches of the military is obtaining a security clearance. Members of the Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, Army, and Navy may be required to obtain a security clearance at some point during their time in the military.

The need to obtain a new security clearance is usually determined by position or MOS. There are certain positions within the military that require a security clearance to gain access to information required for that position. Once it is determined that a military personnel member requires a security clearance because of an assignment or employment, they must complete a security clearance background investigation questionnaire.

How long is a security clearance good for?

Top Secret clearance requires a periodic reinvestigation (PR) every five years. 10 years for secret clearance; and 15 years for secret clearance. How long does a security clearance last after leaving the military?

After leaving the military, security clearance is often good for 24 months or 2 years. In some cases, it may be less than 24 months if the periodic investigation window of time ends less than two years from the time of separation from the military. For example, the periodic review window for secret clearance is every 10 years.

Jobs for Veterans with Security Clearance

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Veterans or soon-to-be service members with security clearance can take advantage of the job market as they transition into civilian life and look for work. There are many employers such as government agencies and commercial defense that are actively looking for employees who have current security clearance positions. The skills for these in-demand positions can vary greatly but include programming, engineering, intelligence, accounting and finance, overseas careers, and many other career opportunities.

Hiring veterans with security clearance is also in the best interest of employers. The investigation and background check phase for security clearance can take anywhere from a few months to over a year to complete and can be costly for employers. There may be hundreds of thousands of background investigations pending security clearance at any given time. Most employers cannot afford to wait that long. For these reasons, recruiters and hiring managers often actively seek out qualified veterans who have security clearances.

Both government agencies and private companies with government contracts hire for cleared jobs, roles that require an active security clearance. In many cases, you are a more attractive job candidate if you have an active or current security clearance as part of your resume.

There are three types of security clearance: Secret, Secret, and Top Secret. There are also positions that require sensitive compartmentalized information (SCI). This level of access is not a clearance. Rather, determining access is based on the need for access to intelligence information. SCI is affiliated with the Intelligence Community (IC), however, many federal agencies have SCI programs.

Having any level of clearance makes you more employable because it’s an easier process to extend a clearance than to get a new one. Security clearances also have three statuses: active, current, and expired.

An active clearance is for those who have current clearance eligibility and a demonstrated need to access classified information. In this position, the employee is informed of the level of access eligibility and has a valid need to access classified information at the appropriate level.

A security clearance is considered current, when the employee has current eligibility for the approval, however, there is no valid requirement for access. In this status, the active clearance is debriefed but may be debriefed again when there is a valid need.

Clearance is considered expired when the employee is out of access for more than 24 months. In this case, a new investigation must be initiated, and the government must decide on the eligibility of a new clearance. This process can be very long, often from six months to a year or more.

Benefits of holding and using a security clearance

Getting a security clearance is like having a special certification or degree on your resume. It makes you more marketable, helps you stand out from other candidates, and increases your chances of getting hired.

An active or current clearance can also increase your earning potential. People in cleared jobs, especially in some of the more technical career fields with certification requirements, often receive higher salaries than counterparts who do not require security clearance for their roles.

If you don’t have a security clearance, you can’t get it yourself. You must be sponsored by a government agency or a company that requires classified performance with a government contract.

Mutual challenges

  • Background investigations and mutual acceptance of national security decisions outline a long-standing policy for initial and continuing access to classified information. However, the application of this reciprocal policy varies among various federal and IC agencies.
  • In November 2018, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence enacted Security Executive Agent Directive 7. The directive states that agencies will accept background investigations completed by an authorized agency if they meet all or part of the investigative criteria for a national security background investigation. . .
  • The challenge with this new guidance is changing the culture of accepting commitments from other agencies in the federal government. Current interoperability processes can take weeks to months from the time a competency “crossover” is requested from the IC, or other federal agencies such as the Department of State, Department of Justice, or Department of Defense. This could potentially affect your ability to land a position with a company that desperately needs a cleared employee in days rather than months.

How to unload a cleared job without an active clearance.

  • There’s good news if you’re interested in a defense or intelligence job that requires a security clearance but doesn’t have one. It is possible to get a job without approval, provided the company is able and willing to sponsor you. An emergency offer may occur while you are going through the initial clearance process. This means that starting employment may depend on obtaining at least an interim clearance qualification.
  • Of course, your chances of getting hired increase if you have the required skills. Software developers, engineers, and those skilled in foreign languages, for example, are highly sought after and, therefore, more likely to be hired for cleared jobs despite not having active clearance. There are steps you can take to improve your odds no matter what your skill set.
  • “Understand the procedure,” advises Mike Hensley, Leidos Security Service Center manager. “Know the security clearance process, and potential restrictions hiring managers may place on candidates who do not have clearance.”
  • Because most cleared positions are direct labor, many hiring managers do not have the ability to hire new hires “overhead” while waiting for the clearance process.

What does a security clearance tell a recruiter about an experienced job seeker?

  • If a recruiter encounters a job seeker with a veteran who has (or has) a security clearance, that means the person has been thoroughly vetted by the Department of Defense. And it has been deemed capable of handling and viewing classified information of varying degrees. This means that they have strong character and behavior. They are honest and trustworthy; And they are reliable and financially responsible. In addition to the many leadership skills and intangible attributes that veterans possess, these qualities translate to hiring veterans!
  • US government agencies provide security clearances. These permissions provide access to restricted areas or information. An agency should request appropriate clearance when hiring a new candidate.
  • Government investigators then screen the candidates to determine their eligibility. Investigators can review fingerprints and criminal records. They also interview the candidate’s friends, family, and other contacts.
  • After the investigation is complete, an adjudicator compares 13 guidelines provided by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). These guidelines look at factors such as personal behavior, national loyalty, and the use of information technology. The adjudicator then decides whether a candidate is eligible for clearance.
  • The Civil Service Act of 1883 established a merit-based system for the recruitment and supervision of civil servants. In this system, civil servants were required to have good character and reputation.
  • In 1939, the Hatch Act expanded this concept. The act ended government employment for anyone who joined a political movement advocating the overthrow of the US government. During World War II, an executive order mandated fingerprinting for government employees.
  • In 1954, the Department of Energy (DOE) created a framework to protect restricted data. Eighteen years later, the Department of Defense (DOD) launched the Defense Investigative Service to bring all background checks under one unit. Since the 1970s, the federal government has initiated a number of initiatives to streamline and maintain security clearances.

Who issues security clearance?

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  • Government agencies that handle classified information issue all security clearances. No single agency serves as the liaison for the entire federal government. However, DOD conducts most background investigations.
  • Under reciprocity guidelines, federal agencies generally accept each other’s investigations and decisions.
  • Agencies that typically require a security clearance include the DOD, the Department of Homeland Security, the DOE, the State Department, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
  • check icon The Department of Defense conducts most background checks and fitness decisions on federal personnel and contractors.
  • check icon The Department of Homeland Security typically grants secret clearances to state, local, private sector, regional, and tribal agencies. Governors receive top-secret clearance.
  • check icon The Department of Energy provides clearances for employees working with classified information or special nuclear material.
  • check icon The State Department maintains the Diplomatic Security Service, which conducts background checks on department employees.
  • check icon The Federal Bureau of Investigation provides security clearances for its employees as well as state and local law enforcement officials who need access to classified information.
  • Prior to 2019, the Office of Personnel Management conducted most background checks. In 2019, Executive Order 13869 transferred much of this power to DOD. Then the DOD created the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency. The agency now performs 95% of background checks for more than 100 federal agencies.
  • DOD investigators are reviewing the candidate’s background. They look at factors such as education, employment history, and criminal record. Investigators may examine documents and interview friends, family, and neighbors.
  • An adjudicator then reviews the data investigators collected against ODNI’s 13 guidelines. These guidelines cover topics such as foreign preferences, sexual behavior, and psychological conditions. The adjudicator then decides on the candidate’s clearance level.

Types of Security Clearance

  • The US government provides three levels of security clearance: Secret, Secret, and Top Secret.
  • Secret clearance
  • A secret clearance gives the holder access to information that could harm national security if leaked. A program manager or executive assistant may require a secret clearance. This clearance level needs to be renewed every 15 years.
  • Secret clearance
  • A secret clearance provides access to data that, if released without authorization, could seriously harm national security. A counterintelligence analyst, cybersecurity analyst, or technical writer may need this clearance level. Holders must renew secret clearance every 10 years.
  • Top Secret Clearance / Sensitive Compartmented Information
  • The unauthorized release of certain information can seriously harm national security. Top Secret clearance allows holders to access this information. A system administrator or nuclear policy analyst may require a secret clearance. This clearance level requires re-examination every five years.
  • Department of Energy Permit
  • DOE issues “L” and “Q” access permits. L authorization corresponds to Secret and Secret clearance levels. A Q clearance is comparable to a Top Secret clearance.
  • Executive Order 13526 identified classified categories for information. These categories help determine which documents may be classified, confidential or classified.

Jobs Requiring Security Clearance

  • Who needs a security clearance? Anyone who works in a job that requires access to classified information or restricted areas. These jobs generally fall into three categories: federal and military jobs, government contractor positions, and intelligence agency roles.
  • Specific jobs that may require a security clearance include:
  • Cryptographer: Cryptographers use protocols to encrypt and decipher data. These senior-level cybersecurity experts may work for national security or government contractors. They often perform threat assessments and cryptographic controls. Cryptographers usually need a bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • Security Analyst: Security analysts review and analyze network systems and organizational policies to help prevent data breaches. These professionals may work for contractors or agencies in international relations or security-based jobs. They require a bachelor’s degree and industry experience.
  • Counterintelligence Analyst: A counterintelligence analyst may work in criminal investigations, counterterrorism support, or counterintelligence. These professionals typically work for the FBI or DOD. This work may require experience in investigative and counterintelligence policy research.
  • Technical Writer: Technical writers produce content on emerging technologies. They may work for the DOD and other national security agencies. These experts review and analyze files to present complex information in a clear and actionable manner. Technical writers often need a bachelor’s degree and about five years of experience.
  • Chief Information Security Officer: In this senior executive role, professionals oversee an organization’s technology security. They lead teams of project managers, software developers, and cybersecurity engineers. This role typically requires a bachelor’s or master’s degree in a related field and 15 or more years of experience.

Do you need a degree to work in cybersecurity?

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  • Explore cybersecurity jobs for military veterans.
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  • How to get security clearance
  • The federal government provides a step-by-step process for obtaining a security clearance:
  • Chevron right icon A candidate receives a conditional job offer.
  • chevron-right icon The candidate submits a questionnaire to the hiring office along with supporting documents. There are separate questionnaires for non-sensitive, national security, and public trust positions.
  • chevron-right icon An investigator is reviewing questionnaires and documents.
  • chevron-right icon Investigator performs fingerprint and background checks. They confirm important events in the applicant’s personal timeline.
  • chevron-right icon An adjudicator determines a candidate’s eligibility for a national security clearance.
  • chevron-right icon The decision maker contacts the hiring agency with the investigation results.
  • Security Clearance Requirements
  • Security clearance requirements vary by a federal agency. However, some general guidelines govern who gets clearance and who doesn’t.
  • Agencies consider factors such as loyalty to the United States, foreign influence or preference, and financial considerations. They look at sexual behavior and drug or alcohol use. They also address psychological conditions, criminal behavior, outdoor activities, and the use of information technology.
  • Security concerns may include supporting an insurgency or applying for citizenship in another country. Investigators also look for patterns of high-risk sexual behavior or a history of not meeting financial obligations.

Additional resources

For more information on security clearance, you can review the following documents.

Security Clearance

Published by the US State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security, this web page provides an overview of security clearances. Readers can learn about security clearance requirements, clearance process, interim clearance, and maintenance of clearance. The page also includes frequently asked questions and contact information.

Defense Counter Intelligence and Security Agency

Operating within the DOD, the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency investigate contractors and companies that do business with the federal government. The agency also helps contractors protect their technology from cybersecurity attacks.

Security clearance for law enforcement

The FBI publishes this document to assist state and local law enforcement officers in applying for security clearances. It allows clearance officers to access confidential information. The document provides information on how to apply and answers questions such as “What is a security clearance?”

  • Calendaring, communication, setting expectations
  • We expect to schedule no earlier than two weeks after our first contact with our first stakeholders. Naturally, this depends on stakeholder availability, so we can’t really predict. If time is of the essence, we don’t wait. Once we know the date for the creation session, we schedule the engagement sessions soon after.
  • We confirm with a short phone call that they are interested and indicate a specific time and date. After we hang up, we send a short email explaining what we plan to do. The email is redundant: it contains everything we discussed in the phone call. People are busy; This process is new to them. They need to know some details. They are both polite and minimize misunderstandings by providing a brief overview of what they can expect during the session.
  • A day or so before the meeting we confirm that they have completed any outstanding tasks required of them (such as scheduling a conference room or accessing a specific area of ​​their workplace). This last reminder primes them for the session, especially helpful if it’s scheduled weeks in advance. If more than one person attends, whether together or separately, we schedule a group orientation session. We do not ask stakeholders to prepare in advance or for an engagement session, but this reminder helps if they need to prepare the environment for the session.
  • If the artifact is to be used in “normal” work situations, we will want to ensure that the stakeholder has a plan for access to the team’s normal and traditional environment in which it works. The stakeholder may need to obtain a special security clearance or notify colleagues of the group’s arrival. Of most significant concern is the routine work of interest that will occur while the team is present. In such circumstances, PRD begins to share some common features with contextual design. 6 Usage is highly influenced by context: whether the stakeholder works on the factory floor or in a cubicle, etc. When the stakeholder is distracted by routine constraints, external validity is enhanced by the team’s observations.
  • During our discussions, we emphasize our interest in seeing stakeholders do real work. Nevertheless, we often come and are ushered into a conference room where the stakeholder is happy to engage with us. If the success of the engagement session depends on the stakeholder using the artifact under normal circumstances, we can start the session in a conference room. Immediately after the orientation is over, we ask to go to the location where the stakeholder usually performs the required activity.

Special preparation

  • The team may need to prepare for the engagement session beyond the artifact and script. A stakeholder may require the team to obtain a security clearance, produce certain identification documents, wear special clothing, or comply with other conditions in order for the team to participate. We had some embarrassing moments when team members failed to get proper IDs and had to stay in the lobby while the rest of us got on with the session.

Non-Disclosure Agreements

  • A mutual condition that most companies require is an NDA. For some organizations, this is a virtually automatic process. For others, it is “once in a while”. Because the team will discuss the stakeholder’s work (or play), and the stakeholder will have the opportunity to explore the team’s thinking, everyone should agree to the confidentiality of the discussion. For some stakeholders, this requirement cannot be overcome and they may need to postpone their participation. Others may need additional people in the session to consult with if the conversation veers into taboo territory.
  • Regardless of the level of restriction, it is up to the facilitator to continue to reinforce one key point: the team has no interest in confidential information. In almost all cases, stakeholders may discuss their work, demonstrate how they will use the artifact, or disclose company secrets, trade secrets, certain personal information, or other harmful information. Can provide use cases without doing. Although PrD expects a certain level of specificity, secret information is not required for PrD to be successful.
  • Count: Determine what is there.
  • Aaron W. Bayles, … Johnny Long, in Infosec Career Hacking, 2005
  • Security Clearance
  • One of the most frustrating aspects of looking for INFOSEC jobs can be that many positions require some form of government security clearance. A search of listings for ‘information security clearance’ returns over 1000 listings .
  • These results show that security clearance holders are in high demand. Unfortunately, getting a security clearance isn’t as easy as requesting one. Most of the time, companies are again.
  • This pressure, whether spoken or not, was felt by many involved in the project. The bank reported heavy losses in 1986 and efforts were being made across the company to reduce them. Some of the bank’s most profitable businesses were sold and 9,600 jobs were cut. One that lost its job was Armacost, and with it went its vision of 1990s technology. Clausen was brought back to run the bank after retirement, and his perception of computers didn’t improve when he examined trust issues.

Economic cuts and the Clausen backlash made it difficult to justify the continued costs of staffing two trust systems when one was mired in costly problems. For several months in late 1986 and early 1987, however, tests of TrustPlus were running with only a few bugs. “There were still bugs, but customers felt they could just go with it and bug out as we went along,” said one former executive. Date of conversion was fixed: 2 March 1987. As the data processing staff rushed to complete the work for the conversion, half of the sixteen-man squad was pulled from the assignment.

How to Get Security Clearance: A Complete Guide

This guide is about how cybersecurity professionals can obtain a security clearance. Security clearance is an important aspect of working in the cybersecurity industry and this guide will outline the different types of security clearances, what types of jobs require a security clearance, and the process to follow to obtain a security clearance. .For purposes of this article, a security clearance is an official determination that an individual may have access to some level of classified information, as determined by an agency of the United States government.

Of course, other types of security clearances are issued by other government and non-government agencies around the world, but as a practical matter, this discussion is limited to clearances issued by US federal government agencies. will remain

Security Clearance Review

Everyone employed by the United States federal government is subject to a basic background investigation of their criminal and credit history. It ensures that all federal employees are “reliable, trustworthy, of good morals and character, and of full and unswerving loyalty to the United States.”

  • Additionally, federal employment positions that involve access to sensitive information require a security clearance. This includes individuals employed by private firms as contractors of the federal government. Applicants must obtain this clearance to determine their trustworthiness and reliability before granting them access to national security information.
  • Security clearances are organized in a hierarchical fashion with each designation indicating the maximum level of classified information that can be accessed by the clearance holder. The classification levels from least restrictive to most restrictive are:
  • Secret This type of security clearance provides access to information that could harm national security if disclosed without authorization. It should be re-examined every 15 years.
  • A Secret Clearance requires a National Agency Check with a Local Agency Check and Credit Check (NACLC).
  • Secret This type of security clearance provides access to information that, if disclosed without authorization, could seriously harm national security. It should be re-examined every 10 years.
  • Secret clearance requires NACLC and credit investigation. It should also be re-examined every 10 years. The investigative requirements for Department of Defense (DoD) approval, which apply to most civilian contractor situations, are known as DoD Regulation 5200.2-R issued by the Personnel Security Program in Part C3.4.2.
  • Top Secret (TS) This type of security clearance provides access to information that, if disclosed without authorization, could cause exceptionally serious damage to national security. It should be re-examined every five years.
  • Top Secret is a more stringent clearance. TS clearance is often granted as a result of a Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI). A TS clearance, typically, affords access to data affecting national security, counterterrorism/counterintelligence, or other highly sensitive data. There are very few people with TS clearance compared to secret clearance. In most cases, an individual with Top Secret clearance is re-vetted every five years.
  • Obtaining a particular level of security clearance does not mean that the clearance holder is automatically granted access to information cleared for that clearance level. In order to legally handle classified information, the clearance holder must have a clear “need to know” in addition to the appropriate level of clearance for the information. A need-to-know determination is usually made by a disclosure officer assigned to the office of origin for classified information.
  • There are also two types of confidential information that require additional handling and access restrictions:
  • Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI), which includes intelligence sources, methods and processes.
  • As with the TS clearance, the SCI clearance is assigned only after the candidate undergoes a special adjudication process to assess the SSBI’s rigors and investigations. SCI access, however, is only assigned to “compartments”. These compartments are necessarily separated from each other in terms of organization so that a person with access to one compartment does not necessarily have access to another. Each basket may have its own additional special requirements and clearance process. An individual may be granted access to, or read access to, a compartment for any period of time.
  • Special Access Programs (SAPs), which are highly sensitive projects and programs.
  • DoD establishes SAPs when specific information vulnerabilities are considered unusual and normal practice.
  • The e-QIP form used for sensitive or national security positions is the SF-86 as indicated in the Tier 3 and Tier 5 investigative standards. The SF85 and SF85P are suitable for serving in government agency positions requiring public trust rather than national security concerns.
  • In addition to verifying responses to questions posed by the OPM e-QIP form, many investigations will include an interview as a routine part of the investigative process. The applicant may be asked to answer questions related to their completed form. This helps the investigator to get clarification about incomplete or unclear answers on the form. Refusal to be interviewed may result in the cancellation of the investigation and the application for a related security clearance.
  • In addition to the questions on these forms, the investigator may ask the applicant about compliance with security requirements, their honesty and integrity, their potential risk of exploitation or coercion, or any other behavior that might indicate . may indicate that the candidate is not Trusted, reliable, or loyal to the U.S. government.
  • The State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) conducts security background investigations for personnel of the State Department and other federal agencies. DSS describes the background investigation process as including these steps:
  • The job candidate receives a conditional offer of employment and completes and submits the appropriate form – either the questionnaire for national security positions, the questionnaire for non-sensitive positions, or the questionnaire for public trust positions – and Submits other required forms as appropriate. Getting office services.
  • The hiring office reviews the completed questionnaire and other required forms and submits it — called a security package — to DSS.
  • DSS reviews the security package and formally opens a background investigation.
  • DSS checks records and fingerprints against commercial and government databases.
  • DSS verifies and verifies important information and events from the candidate’s past and recent history. This may include interviews with people who know the candidate well. The investigator may conduct a face-to-face interview with the candidate as part of the process.
  • After the investigation is complete, DSS determines the candidate’s national security eligibility in accordance with Security Executive Agent Directive (SEAD) 4: National Security Decision Guidelines.
  • In some cases, the background investigation may be referred to the appropriate panel of the State Department of Human Resources.
  • After determining a candidate’s national security eligibility, DSS contacts the appropriate hiring authority.
  • The United States Penal Code (Title 18, Section 1001) provides that knowingly falsifying or concealing a material fact is punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment for up to five (5) years.
  • In addition, federal agencies commonly fire, deny security clearance, or disqualify individuals who materially and knowingly falsify these forms, and this may result in future employment. is a permanent record. One part remains.
  • The Defense Security Service releases the following statuses to let the candidates know what is happening during the process.
  • The receiving inquiry service provider (ISP) has acknowledged receipt of the inquiry request and will review it for acceptance.
  • Unacceptable ISP determined lack of inquiry request. The applicant will then receive a message with the reason for the rejection of the application. If the employee still needs clearance, a new investigation application will need to be initiated and submitted with the correct information.
  • The designated ISP has determined that the investigation request is acceptable and the investigation is currently ongoing/open.
  • The closed ISP has completed the investigation and sent the inquiry for decision.
  • Why an applicant may be denied security clearance
  • There are various reasons why applicants may be denied security clearance. The primary considerations in an investigation are the individual’s honesty, candor, and the completeness of their security clearance form.
  • Every effort is made to determine whether granting or continuing eligibility for security clearance is consistent with national security interests. A wide variety of factors can be investigated.
  • The following personal characteristics, complexities and behaviors are likely to be covered by the scope of a security clearance background investigation. Any indication that the applicant may have substantial problems in any of these areas will likely raise a flag indicating the need for further investigation and a possible denial of clearance.
  • Loyalty to America.
  • Possibility of foreign influence
  • Foreign Preference
  • sexual behavior
  • Personal behavior
  • Financial considerations
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Drug involvement and substance
  • What is security clearance? Types and requirements for US jobs
  • Written by Coursera • Updated November 21, 2022
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  • Security clearance is a requirement for US federal jobs. Here’s a guide to the different types and how to get clearance.
  • A man in a black sweater is pointing at something on a computer screen to a coworker in glasses sitting in front of his desktop computer.
  • A security clearance is similar to a background check. This is required for individuals who are employed by the US government or by an organization that handles national security information. The security clearance process ensures your ability to securely access, manage and protect your confidential information.
  • A security clearance is required for many government and cybersecurity roles around the world. However, this article focuses on national security clearances in the United States. It examines the process of obtaining a security clearance, the different types of security clearances that exist, and the jobs that may be required.
  • Security clearance is a one-tier status. It is usually given to employees working in a federal government agency and to private contractors working with the government. This comprehensive process checks your criminal record, credit history, and other personal details to verify that you are “reliable, reliable, of good morals and character, and loyal to the United States” [ 1]. Security clearance must be issued before starting work.
  • Examples of organizations that require a higher level of clearance include national security agencies such as the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). More than four million Americans hold national security clearances, 85 percent of whom work with the Department of Defense (DoD).
  • A Brief History of US Security Clearance
  • The authority to classify information and grant security clearances is found in Executive Orders (EOs) – most recently EO 13526. Security clearances originated with the Pendleton (Civil Service) Act of 1883, which required applicants for federal employment to have character, reputation, and trustworthiness, in part to prevent nepotism. In 1941, EO 8781 required federal employees to undergo fingerprinting and FBI investigations, and 1948 EO 9835 required military personnel to adhere to these standards. In 1953 the order expanded to include most federal employees.

Security clearance level

  • National security clearances are organized into a hierarchy. Each of the following three levels indicates the maximum level of classified information you can access.
  • Secret Clearance: This type of security clearance is the least restrictive. It provides access to information that could harm national security if disclosed without authorization. It must be re-examined every 15 years for continued eligibility. Additionally, secret clearance requires a National Agency Check, Local Agency Check, and Credit Check (NACLC) [2].
  • Secret Clearance: Provides access to information that could seriously harm national security if disclosed without authorization. Continued eligibility must be reinvestigated every 10 years and requires a NACLC and credit investigation [2].
  • Top Secret Clearance: This type of security clearance is the most restrictive and provides access to information that could seriously harm national security if disclosed without authorization. Re-examination must be done every five years for continued eligibility. Usually given after a Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI), for data related to counter-terrorism, counter-intelligence, and other highly sensitive information [2].
  • Even when an employee obtains security clearance, the system operates on a need-to-know basis. Access rights are usually determined by officers assigned to the department handling the requested data. There are two types of classified information that require additional clearance to access:
  • Sensitive distributed information includes methods and sources related to intelligence. This clearance is usually granted after a rigorous SSBI and decision-making process and only to compartments with their own specific requirements and clearances [2].
  • Special access programs involve highly sensitive projects, typically established by the DoD for programs such as new military technology. This clearance level is granted to very few people [2].
  • Jobs that require a security clearance.
  • Anyone who works in a job that requires access to national security information needs a clearance. This includes people in federal government and military jobs, from executive-level roles to non-sensitive positions on custodial staff. These roles can include librarian, IT system administrator and more. Clearance levels should be at or above the level of information you will handle. They also vary according to your position, responsibilities and your system.

3 Benefits of Getting Security Clearance in I.T Industry

  • Job Seeker Advice
  • Information Technology Resume, IT Staffing and Recruitment, Security Clearance
  • In today’s digital age, I.T. The industry is developing. It offers some of the best opportunities for innovation and financial gain worldwide. According to a digital spillover study by Oxford Economics and Huawei, the global digital economy was worth $11.5 trillion in 2016, equivalent to 15.5 percent of worldwide gross domestic product (GDP).
  • While I.T. While sector growth is inviting, security clearance poses hurdles within the industry. Dave Underwood, president of TAC Secured, has made a career out of having the most sought-after I.T. Employees who hold an active security clearance. Underwood has said that security clearance is like a “secret handshake” in the industry. Getting one of the two invites you to the I.T. Puts you there by making it easy to find industry and government, defense and security jobs that require clearance.
  • As an unofficial prerequisite for advancement in I.T. Industry, having a security clearance has numerous advantages. Sentient Digital, Inc. At, we provide technology solutions to defense, federal, and commercial clients, and our cleared I.T. Professionals have the industry insight to explain the benefits of obtaining a security clearance. Learn more about how a security clearance can attract employers, increase your earning potential, and give you easier access to higher clearances in the future.
  • Security clearance levels
  • A folder labeled Top Secret. A Top Secret security clearance can have even greater benefits than a lower clearance level.
  • Anyone hired to do business with the federal government must undergo a general background check, but a security clearance gives you valuable access. Eligibility guidelines and difficulty levels for obtaining a clearance depend on the sensitivity of the information that the clearance makes accessible.
  • The more sensitive the information, the stricter the requirements for accessing it. Not surprisingly, there are additional benefits to having a security clearance at the highest levels of access. If you’re in the process of getting clearance, take a moment to learn how to avoid security clearance delays.
  • Interim Security Clearance: An interim security clearance gives you the ability to perform classified tasks on a short-term basis while a full background investigation is underway. An applicant will be considered for an interim security clearance at the request of their hiring official. Rather than requiring an investigation during a specific period of time, an interim security clearance depends on what the investigation finds. Therefore, an interim clearance can sometimes be granted very quickly after an application, if the investigation does not reveal any concerns.
  • Secret Security Clearance: A Secret Security Clearance gives you access to information that has the potential to adversely affect national security if disclosed to the public. Much military personnel are granted this level of security clearance and are usually re-vetted every 15 years. A Secret Clearance requires a National Agency Check with a Local Agency Check and Credit Check (NACLC).
  • Secret Security Clearance: A Secret Security Clearance gives you access to information that could have serious implications for our nation’s security if it became public. A CSIS evaluation must return a positive result of credible status before a Secret Security Clearance is available. This clearance provides the ability to access classified-level information on a need-to-know basis. As with a secret security clearance, a secret security clearance requires a NACLC.
  • Top Secret Security Clearance: A top secret security clearance gives you access to information that, if disclosed, could have serious consequences for our nation’s security. Clearance at this high level will naturally require more stringent scrutiny than at a lower level. A top secret clearance provides the ability to view designated and classified information based on the information required.
  • Considering the intensity of the process, you may be wondering, “How much does a top-secret clearance cost?” As reported in January 2021, the average cost of a Top Secret security clearance was between $3,000 and $15,000, and the government covers these costs for its employees.
  • The literal financial answer to “How much does a top secret clearance cost?” In terms of return on investment, it depends on the job a particular individual gets with the clearance. However, opening up additional employment opportunities by obtaining a top-secret security clearance certainly increases one’s earning potential.
  • 2 categories of highly classified information
  • SCI and SAPs are two categories of top-secret information. The intelligence in them is even more.

How to get security clearance for IT jobs

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  • How to get security clearance for IT jobs
  • When you apply for a role in the UK defense or public sector, you will likely need to obtain a security clearance before starting your job.
  • Check out our latest Security Cleared Jobs
  • If the role you are applying for requires you to be security cleared, the relevant security checks will be managed by your recruitment consultant but a government agency.
  • It’s important to note that, just because you’ve cleared security before, it doesn’t mean you’re exempt from further security checks in the future. National security policies change, organizations have different expectations, and different jobs have different responsibilities.

So what is a security clearance?

  • Basically, a security clearance is a series of checks that determine your level of risk when dealing with sensitive and potentially classified government information. Jonathan Martin, IT recruitment expert, explains further:
  • “Security clearance is about ensuring that people working with sensitive and potentially classified information are trusted individuals who will keep that information private and secure. For example, in military procurement programs. Working, a systems engineer will naturally have access to sensitive information about new features of a warship, so project stakeholders, including the government, need to ensure that the person in this role is responsible. And he’s not a threat. A security threat.”

4 Types of Security Clearance

  • There are four different levels of security checks, each in-depth depending on the role you are applying for: Baseline Personal Security Standard (BPSS), Counter Terrorism Check (CTC), Security Check (SC), and Developed Vetting ( DV)))
  • BPSS
  • CTC
  • DV
  • SC

How do you get a security clearance?

  • If a role requires you to be security cleared, the relevant security check will be carried out by the person who employs you but a government agency. At a minimum, you will be asked to prove your identity (including your nationality and immigration status) and complete a criminal record declaration form. Advance clearance requires a more thorough background check, credit reference check, and security service check on your criminal record.

How long does security clearance take?

  • Depending on the level of vetting required, the security clearance can take anywhere between 1-2 days (BPSS), 6-8 weeks (CTC), or nine months (DV, CTC, and DV), including security check (SC). . May take between 4-12 weeks.
  • Jonathan Martin offers advice to help speed up the process:
  • “The forms can be complicated, especially if you’re filling them out for the first time. I recommend reading the guidelines carefully and completing the security paperwork as soon as possible – if you delay, it’s just will affect the process. Be sure to triple-check the forms before processing them; errors or missing information will increase the time it takes to process the clearance.
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