Office for Compliance & Risk Management

Office for Compliance & Risk Management

Personnel Security

Security of Classified Information

Classified information is sensitive information to which access is restricted by law or regulation to particular classes of people. A formal security clearance is requied to handle classified documents or access to classified data. 

The restrictions on classified data are determined by the threat level to National Security. The following is a listing of the general classification levels:

Levels of Classified Information

  • Top Secret: The highest level of classification of material on a national level. Such material would cause "exceptionally grave damage" to national security if publicly available.
  • Secret: Such material would cause "serious damage" to national security if publicly available.
  • Confidential: Such material would cause "damage" or be "prejudicial" to national security if publicly available.
  • Restricted: Such material would cause "undesirable effects" if publicly available. Some countries do not have such a classification.
  • Unclassified: Technically not a classification level, but is used for government documents that do not have a classification listed above. Such documents can sometimes be viewed by those without security clearance.

Obtaining Personnel Security Clearance

When working on a contract issued by a branch of the United States Government or another defense contractor, and it is determined that access to classified information is essential in the performance of your duties on the contract, you may be required to obtain a personnel security clearance.

Initial Security Clearance

If you have never held a clearance, or your previous clearance was terminated over 24 months prior, the following items are needed in order to process your request:

- Justification for a Personnel Security Clearance

- Proof of Citizenship

- Photo ID and Social Security Card

 Once it is determined that a clearance is required you will meet with the Facility Security Officer to submit a request for investigation.

Investigation Process

Your investigation will consist of a minimum of 2 steps.

1. After your meeting with the Facility Security Officer you will be given information on how to access the Electronic Questionnaire for Investigations Processing (q-QIP) to complete the SF86.

2. An appointment will be scheduled to submit your fingerprints electronically.

After completion of the above steps the FSO will review your information. Once this review is complete the data will be submitted to begin your investigation.

Initial Briefings

Once your clearance has been granted the FSO will schedule a meeting to present the Initial Security Briefing and complete the Classified Information Non-Disclosure Agreement, Standard Form 312 (SF 312).

Annual refresher briefings are required, as well as an annual Insider Threat briefing. Additional briefings will be provided to all cleared employees as needed.

 Periodic Re-investigations

As a cleared employee, you will be asked to complete an updated copy of the Electronic Questionnaire for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) approximately once every (10) ten years for a SECRET clearance, every (5) five years for a TOP SECRET clearance. This is a routine periodic re-investigation. We will contact you and request that you complete an updated e-QIP Questionnaire.