Security Clearance question

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Kirk Gunn, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. Kirk Gunn

    Kirk Gunn Screenwriter

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    Would like to apply for a particular job but what is Special Access ?

    Description states: "Clearance Required: SPECIAL ACCESS"

    Thanks !
     
  2. Cam McFarland

    Cam McFarland Supporting Actor

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    Very confusing......care to share any more "details" or
    would you have to kill me if you did....[​IMG]
     
  3. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    I'm not sure what the meaning is, but there are probably hundreds of levels of security clearance. I don't think it will change the process at all, they'll still just go talk to all of your family, neighbors, friends, co-workers, etc. If it's one of the higher levels you might have to go through an all-inclusive polygraph (I forget what it's actually called), but it's one where they'll ask you about lots and lots of stuff that you'd never expect.
     
  4. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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    This most likely means that they expect you to be able to obtain this clearance after you're hired. You can't just go and get a clearance any time you want one - you have to need it.
     
  5. Kirk Gunn

    Kirk Gunn Screenwriter

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    I'm hoping Julie is correct. I don't currently have a Security Clearance, but recently went through a very severe background check for the NRC which gave me access to confidential nuclear information. If I can get a company to sponsor me, it shouldn't be a problem...

    Thanks
     
  6. Cam McFarland

    Cam McFarland Supporting Actor

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    So, I guess if someone has, lets say, murder and/or felony arson charges in their past, they may as well forget it, huh.......
     
  7. Seth--L

    Seth--L Screenwriter

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    Probably means you'll need to go through a FBI background check when applying for the job.
     
  8. DwightK

    DwightK Second Unit

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    I have not heard of "special access" but have been filling out clearance forms since 1980. Both DoD and DoE use the SF86 form and it is a nightmare. Luckily I havent had to get the top clearancas so the check isn't as bad. They still take 6 months or more to process.

    It is funny that most cleared jobs want you to already have a clearance to apply. That way you can work right away. We have a new batch of people here and about half aren't cleared for anything. It sucks to have to modify lesson plans and everything to accomodate and then they can't really start to qualify until the clearance goes through except for initial school.

    Another wierd thing is that the different departments don't recognize clearances from any other department.
     
  9. Brett_E

    Brett_E Agent

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    I have a secret clearance and they check your credit history, medical history, and criminal background for (they say) the last five years. There is also a top secret clearance at my company and that is an even more extensive background check. The TS also requires a lie detector test and interview and your references will be questioned as well. I was not interviewed for the secret clearance. The DoD does all the secret/top secret checks here.

    The whole point is to see if you would be susceptible to bribes or have some reason to betray the trust of your country.

    The forms are a nightmare and seem to be a test in themselves. Like Dwight mentioned, it generally takes 6-12 months to get the clearance.

    Kirk, it doesn't sound like you'll have a problem based on your second post. Don't sweat it.
     
  10. Leila Dougan

    Leila Dougan Screenwriter

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    I wouldn't necessarily assume that they will hire you without one on the condition you are able to obtain one. There are a tons of employers that expect you to already have one. If it's listed as a requirement, it sounds like this is the case.

    It's unfortunate because its a chicken & egg thing. . .you need an employer to sponser you but those same employers expect new employees to already have them.

    If you don't have one you may still want to apply, but expect not to be picked.
     
  11. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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    I had to have a clearance in my previous job and they required it in order to be employed. However, they hired people and then let them go if they didn't get the clearance. They also terminated all clearances when a person left the company.

    I guess things have changed since then [​IMG]
     
  12. KenRen

    KenRen Stunt Coordinator

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    Kirk,

    Special Access insinuates that the position requires additional security clearance investigative actions. All standard within the government.

    Usually for what is called 'collateral" classified information access such as access to confidential or secret information, the requirements are filling out a security questionaire, national agency checks (NACs) such as credit reports, local, state, and federal law enforcement checks, and an interview.

    For higher access levels such as top secret, secret restricted data, or special access programs and compartemented information, additional requirements include what is called a apecial background investigation or SBI. This involves additional agency checks and interviews with your family and friends and coworkers. A follow-on interview may be required to resolve any descrepancies between what you reported and what was found during the SBI.

    In either case, the investigations cover your last 7 years or to age 18, whichever is more.

    If it is truly a special access program, they may also levy additional security requirements such as a polygraph. These polygraphs, with one exception, are usually limited scope polygraphs covering only certain specified counterintelligence topics such as foreign contacts.

    In your geographic area, a clearance is a great pedigree to have. And not to insult anyone, but due to new government mandates, clearances are now almost universally transferable. Just remember, honesty is the best policy.

    Of course, if you have an inflatable sheep in your closet, you may want to look elsewhere.....just kidding there.

    KenRen
     
  13. Kirk Gunn

    Kirk Gunn Screenwriter

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    Wow - that's a long time to remember..... could recreational drug use (pot, little coke) back in my early 20s disqualify me ? I'm 40 now and never been arrested, no record, excellent credit rating, etc.

    I'm still searching for that illusive job that will help me get my initial clearance, doesn't look like the one mentioned above will pan out. Got quite a few headhunters on the job !

    No sheep in the closet...... inflatable or otherwise [​IMG]
     
  14. DwightK

    DwightK Second Unit

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    Nice to see that clearances are transferring between agencies now. That is a HUGE cost savings.

    Honesty is what matters on these things.
     
  15. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    That can't be stressed enough, I don't think anybody is going to care if you had some wild days 20+ years ago, but don't lie about it. Nothing will get you the "denied" stamp faster than them finding you "lying" about your past. Also we were told to not be afraid of saying "I don't know" on that endless application to some questions as they ask some far out stuff that I doubt most people will ever keep track of.

    Andrew
     
  16. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    I disagree on that. A buddy of mine was going through a TS interview. When he was 16 he went with some friends on a road trip. The next morning he woke up and needed to get home. His friend was still drunk passed out so he left a note and drove home. Friend wakes up and calls the police says his car is stolen. Blah Blah Blah
    FF 25 years 2 kids and a wife later... they grilled him for nearly 3 weeks on that issue.
    He finally told them enough is enough and he had nothing more to say.
    In the end they gave it to him.

    An admin I once knew became born again and told the security officer she once tried pot when she was in HS but did not put it on the clearence form.
    Oh my God ...after what they put her through I think she was joined a cult and sacrificed goats to the Devil. It was ugly
     
  17. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    I disagree on that. A buddy of mine was going through a TS interview. When he was 16 he went with some friends on a road trip. The next morning he woke up and needed to get home. His friend was still drunk passed out so he left a note and drove home. Friend wakes up and calls the police says his car is stolen. Blah Blah Blah
    FF 25 years 2 kids and a wife later... they grilled him for nearly 3 weeks on that issue.
    He finally told them enough is enough and he had nothing more to say.
    In the end they gave it to him.

    An admin I once knew became born again and told the security officer she once tried pot when she was in HS but did not put it on the clearence form.
    Oh my God ...after what they put her through I think she was joined a cult and sacrificed goats to the Devil. It was ugly
     
  18. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    That is exactly what they are looking for, things not on your application that should be. I love how lightly people take a TS clearance, even if the job you are getting has little in terms of true "TS" info, the clearance is generally transferable and lasts for what, 10 years? Who is to say that you won't be looking at highly secretive information 5 years from now?

    If you are willing to lie/omit information, then what else are you hiding? That is the approach they take, and it's the way they have to look at it.

    Andrew
     
  19. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    That is exactly what they are looking for, things not on your application that should be. I love how lightly people take a TS clearance, even if the job you are getting has little in terms of true "TS" info, the clearance is generally transferable and lasts for what, 10 years? Who is to say that you won't be looking at highly secretive information 5 years from now?

    If you are willing to lie/omit information, then what else are you hiding? That is the approach they take, and it's the way they have to look at it.

    Andrew
     
  20. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    No, there are differences.

    My older brother works as a briefer / advanced planner at the Pentagon now, and my sister with the state department..

    When my older brother went up for his position, he was checked every which way from tuesday, medical records, money he had spent, why he spent it on, why he had an NSF when he was 16 on his first checking account, and so on [​IMG]

    In fact, all of the immediate family and his wife's family were also put through the ringer, if any of us were felons, etc. he was told flat out he would not get the job. When I married my wife, out of country (Jamaica) and her being a naturalized citizen it was still noticed [​IMG]

    Seriously, dependant on the job you have with the government, people can/are very careful about who you are. No one wants you to get blackmailed, etc.

    My sister, on the other hand, had a much easier time.. she leaves for Japan shortly as a translator for the embassador. None of the family members or anything were ever involved when that happened, she had to go through a short process, was given her credentials, and off she went.

    In both cases, I don't think you can obtain it until you apply unless you transfer elsewhere..

    Good luck [​IMG] Best advice: don't lie about anything on your app, disclose what you remember, if it's piddly crap, don't bother putting it down.. things that aren't in your record places (ie, that one time a store owner chased you out for stealing a candy bar) are unlikely to haunt you.. [​IMG]
     

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