Some positions may require a Federal Security
Clearance as an employee or contractor. This
is not something that is easy to start, easy to
submit or quick to complete. If you do not need
one they are difficult to obtain. If you need one
but do not have one you may not be hired.
Fortunately, the time to complete is better.
Click to enlarge image above
Handling non-public materials of the Federal Government necessitates they will not
be published by the New York Times, or Uncle Freddy's House of Horrors web page.
As seen recently, stolen documents placed into the public domain can and have put
people's lives at risk including those of family members.
Companies often need these positions filled ASAP thus lean heavily towards those who
have existing active clearances. Part of the reason is the processes lengthy time to
complete. As discussed below, the time required for the applicant to complete the
detailed paperwork, submit it for processing, for the many interviews and
investigations/background checks, is expensive, labor intensive and time consuming.
Federal Security Clearances are performed by the FBI which is a good thing.
The FBI does many other activities which are higher priorities. Not so good for you.
Most employer background check forms are a simple one-page document at most.
The Federal form, at last look, was eighteen pages and in part starts asking for the
name, phone number, e-mail address & street address of your Kindergarten teacher.
There was no requirement to provide a certified Death Certificate but this is, in fact,
very serious business. You will need to identify people the FBI can interview about you
and your relationship and experiences with them. You need to insure they are "clean"
in their background.
In a quick note, time is not on your side. Reluctance to complete detailed documents
for a "deep dive" into your background, relationships, employment, political activities,
and other aspects of your life is part of the effort to protect the country.
With a shortage of FBI Agents and higher priorities, doing background checks is not a
priority given to the FBI making it longer to get started. It is a lengthy process to dive
into all of your areas. It is a lengthy process for the report to be processed to obtain
a clearance. You then have the challenge of being approved for the level of clearance
that is required. Fundamentally there is Secret, Top Secret and Classified with special
classifications for Compartmentalized, and Eyes Only plus potentially others.
Serving one's country is an honorable profession but it has roadblocks, challenges.
You can potentially apply for a Security Clearance on your own but the cost is high if
they will entertain your request. As a general rule of thumb, if you do not hold a
security clearance when you apply at the required level you will most likely not be a
However, there is another side to all this. Imagine being out for dinner or at a bar by
yourself. A very attractive member of the opposite sex asks to site by or with you and
strikes up a conversation. They are very delightful, fascinating and intelligent. Then it
hits you: Is this person (a) with a foreign intelligence operation starting a campaign to
extract information from you, (b) with a US intelligence operation to see if you could be
enticed to reveal information, or (c) someone you really want to know for a potential
long term relationship. Your life has changed.
The following are sites shown online but use good judgment about trying to enter
any information on yourself as you may initiate things you don't want any part of.
Fortunately, there are many who find no humor in protecting our national security.
e-QUIP Form - Online submission for Investigative Forms
Information provided above may change at any time without notice due to the continually evolving
demands and changing dynamics of protecting the American Homeland and we thank them all.