Updating the topic below on Security Clearance Defense. If and when you receive an LOI and SOR (Letter of Intent and Statement of Reasons), give us a call. We have a proven track record and can help save your clearance, position and career. As a matter of fact, we received word this morning that an aviator client’s eligibility to access confidential information — pulled by DoD pending our response to his SOR — was reinstated. This first class professional now gets to continue his distinguished career unabated.
Yours respectfully, Bill Meili
Dallas Office: 214 363-1828
DoD revamps security clearance policies
Changes based on probes into Navy Yard shooting
By Andrew Tilghman email@example.com
Security failures that were partly to blame for the Washington Navy
Yard shooting last year have led the Pentagon to overhaul the way
background checks are conducted, and possibly shrink the massive roster
of 3.5 million people who hold active security clearances.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced several policy changes March 18
as he unveiled the results of investigations into the shooting that
killed 12 people inside a restricted- access Navy building.
The gunman, Aaron Alexis, was a contractor and former sailor who held a
security clearance despite “a pattern of misconduct and disturbing
behavior,” investigators said.
Alexis was granted a security clearance “even though he never needed it
while on active duty with the Navy. This eligibility, valid for 10 years,
allowed him to later gain employment at a [Defense Department]
contracting firm” at the Navy Yard, according to an outside review of
the shooting incident.
Hagel said DoD may reduce the number of secret-level security clearances
by at least 10 percent.
The military also will begin “continuous evaluations” of people holding
security clearances, meaning background checks will be conducted
continually and randomly. Current policy calls for updating background
checks only when the security clearance is up for renewal, typically
every 10 years.
“This will help trigger an alert if derogatory information becomes
available, for example if someone with a security clearance gets
arrested,” Hagel said. DoD also may start conducting its own background
checks instead of letting the civilian Office of Personnel Management
handle those reviews, as it now does, he said.
Security clearances are critically important to many service members who
would be unable to perform their day- to-day work without them.
Moreover, clearances are often valid beyond military separation, and
allow veterans to compete for lucrative jobs in the private sector that
But the external review pointed to “a growing culture of
over-classification,” and noted that since 2001, the number of
individual security clearances approved each year by DoD has tripled.
The review recommended that background checks should examine applicants’
social media accounts; such accounts currently are not considered in the
Background checks also should have more complete access to
lawenforcement databases that include arrest records. Today’s checks
often only screen for convictions, the report said. Background checks
also should include reviews of applicants’ financial status, the report
Finally, DoD should consider changing its policy that does not disqualify
applicants for “omission, concealment, or falsification of relevant
facts from the personnel security questionnaire,” according to the
The Sept. 16 shooting highlights DoD’s flawed approach to insider threat
prevention, said Paul Stockton, the former assistant secretary of
defense who helped lead the outside review of the Navy Yard shooting at
Hagel’s request last year.
“For decades, the department has approached security from a perimeter
perspective — if we strengthen the perimeter, build our fences if you
will, against threats on the other side, we’ll be secure,” Stockton said
“That approach is outmoded. It’s broken, and the department needs to
replace it. Increasingly, threats — cyber, kinetic, all threats — they
are inside the perimeter. What the Department of Defense should do is
build security from within,” Stockton said.
Hagel announced plans to create a “Defense Department Insider Threat
Management and Analysis Center,” which will help track the policies and
procedures designed to prevent future incidents like the Navy Yard