Top Secret Security Clearances

So you want to be a Viper driver, mechanic, loader, avionics technician...? Here you will learn that you will need education, hard work and steadfast dedication.
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

joseph223

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 17
  • Joined: 18 Oct 2011, 13:44

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 04:26

What is looked at during investigations for these clearances?

Aside from the obvious stuff like being a murderer or drug runner, I've been told that they primarily look to see if you might be a foreign spy or have affiliated with other nations, and to see if you lie or not.

Anything I'm missing here, or is that pretty much it? I heard that stuff like credit scores can also screw one up. I would assume this is because they don't want lazy/irresponsible people with sensitive information?

How in depth do the checks go? Will the FBI be checking on my F-16.net forum posts 2 years from now? :P On a more general note, do they even check the internet at all really? Do they pull any sort of sneaky tricks that one should know about, or is it really just a basic straight-forward investigation? Anything one should be prepared to do aside from telling the truth?

Thanks, guys.
Offline
User avatar

Jon

F-16.net Editor

F-16.net Editor

  • Posts: 1969
  • Joined: 06 Nov 2003, 18:21

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 05:23

Someone with financial issues would be more likely to be at risk for wanting to sell secrets for financial gain and thus a credit check would reveal this possibility. It's not a lazy issue.
Offline

integralsrulz

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 7
  • Joined: 04 Apr 2009, 06:10
  • Location: Houston,Tx

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 12:03

My first post on here if I am not mistaken. But going through a TS background check isn't really that bad. They mostly interview your family/friends and so on. Then they will ask your friends for other contacts of people who may have known you prior to the interview. The background check could take anywhere from 6 months to a year give or take. For specific caveats I.E. working for the DOE or any other agencies like the CIA/NSA dealing with specific controls they might do a Counter intel Polygraph or a Life style Polygraph. But for the run of the mill TS clearance it's mostly financial checks to see if you aren't in debt. They are very vigilant when it comes to financial stuff so make sure your stuff is in order prior to your clearance check. Divorces have been make or breaks for some people I know considering their ex partners most likely ruined their credit before the divorce was final.
Offline

fiskerwad

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 753
  • Joined: 13 Nov 2004, 19:43
  • Location: 76101

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 15:10

Form 398: "Do you take drugs?"
Me: "NO"
Form 398: "Are you willing to stop taking drugs?"
Me: "NO"

Not all the questions will make sense, put N/A on EVERY line with no correct answer.
fisk
NMI
Mipple?
Offline

TJSmitty

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 284
  • Joined: 11 Aug 2006, 16:46
  • Location: Moodus, CT

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 17:59

I had "bounced" check at the BX @ Hill AFB in '85...

When I got my clearance "renewed" (switched over from military to civilian) in '93, the investigator wanted to know all of the details on why I bounced a check... They didn't like my answer that I had "no clue"....

I contacted the BX @ Hill and they had no record of it because of the age, but they had reported it to somebody...

I still got my clearance, but I had to write a letter stating what I could remember, etc....

They contacted my references & asked those references for additional references.... they really do check, that's what they get paid to do...

Smitty
Last edited by TJSmitty on 07 Dec 2011, 19:22, edited 1 time in total.
Tim Smith
Avionics '81 - present
F-16 A/B/C/D
F-111D FB-111A
F-15A/B
F-22A
F-18E/F & G
Wedgetail
Offline

Prinz_Eugn

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 957
  • Joined: 03 Aug 2008, 03:35

Unread post07 Dec 2011, 19:05

Be honest about everything, because them finding out something important you didn't tell them is infinitely worse than just telling them yourself.
"A visitor from Mars could easily pick out the civilized nations. They have the best implements of war."
Offline

joseph223

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 17
  • Joined: 18 Oct 2011, 13:44

Unread post15 Dec 2011, 01:31

integralsrulz wrote:My first post on here if I am not mistaken. But going through a TS background check isn't really that bad. They mostly interview your family/friends and so on. Then they will ask your friends for other contacts of people who may have known you prior to the interview. The background check could take anywhere from 6 months to a year give or take. For specific caveats I.E. working for the DOE or any other agencies like the CIA/NSA dealing with specific controls they might do a Counter intel Polygraph or a Life style Polygraph. But for the run of the mill TS clearance it's mostly financial checks to see if you aren't in debt. They are very vigilant when it comes to financial stuff so make sure your stuff is in order prior to your clearance check. Divorces have been make or breaks for some people I know considering their ex partners most likely ruined their credit before the divorce was final.

Monetary concerns aside, how about bitter and vengeful family members (with no 'substance/dirt' to speak of; just hate?)
fiskerwad wrote:Form 398: "Do you take drugs?"
Me: "NO"
Form 398: "Are you willing to stop taking drugs?"
Me: "NO"

Not all the questions will make sense, put N/A on EVERY line with no correct answer.
fisk
NMI

LOL :D Thanks
TJSmitty wrote:I had "bounced" check at the BX @ Hill AFB in '85...

When I got my clearance "renewed" (switched over from military to civilian) in '93, the investigator wanted to know all of the details on why I bounced a check... They didn't like my answer that I had "no clue"....

I contacted the BX @ Hill and they had no record of it because of the age, but they had reported it to somebody...

I still got my clearance, but I had to write a letter stating what I could remember, etc....

They contacted my references & asked those references for additional references.... they really do check, that's what they get paid to do...

Smitty

That's good to hear. I only hope that if I would not qualify it would be purely my fault and not something out of my control.
Jon wrote:Someone with financial issues would be more likely to be at risk for wanting to sell secrets for financial gain and thus a credit check would reveal this possibility. It's not a lazy issue.

Ah, okay. Thanks.
Prinz_Eugn wrote:Be honest about everything, because them finding out something important you didn't tell them is infinitely worse than just telling them yourself.

Thanks.

Can anyone add any more threats aside from lying, crime, and credit?
Offline
User avatar

JoeSambor

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 822
  • Joined: 28 Dec 2004, 05:56

Unread post15 Dec 2011, 12:02

joseph223 wrote:What is looked at during investigations for these clearances?

Aside from the obvious stuff like being a murderer or drug runner, I've been told that they primarily look to see if you might be a foreign spy or have affiliated with other nations, and to see if you lie or not.

Anything I'm missing here, or is that pretty much it? I heard that stuff like credit scores can also screw one up. I would assume this is because they don't want lazy/irresponsible people with sensitive information?

How in depth do the checks go? Will the FBI be checking on my F-16.net forum posts 2 years from now? :P On a more general note, do they even check the internet at all really? Do they pull any sort of sneaky tricks that one should know about, or is it really just a basic straight-forward investigation? Anything one should be prepared to do aside from telling the truth?

Thanks, guys.



You'd better hope they don't check F-16.net posts...if they do they will know that you were nervous about your TS clearance for some reason.

Best Regards,
Joe Sambor
LM Aero Field Service Engineer
Woensdrecht Logistics Center, The Netherlands
Offline

158thfw_dfw

Newbie

Newbie

  • Posts: 10
  • Joined: 14 Apr 2008, 00:55
  • Location: KBVT

Unread post16 Dec 2011, 08:31

JoeSambor wrote:
joseph223 wrote:What is looked at during investigations for these clearances?


Aside from the obvious stuff like being a murderer or drug runner, IThey check everything, and I mean everything. Had mine back in 91. They will most likely be aware of your posts on here as well. It does seem like your nervous to me as well and that will raise a big flag.

Best of luck
Offline

Raptor_claw

Senior member

Senior member

  • Posts: 320
  • Joined: 29 Sep 2006, 07:11

Unread post16 Dec 2011, 18:07

Simple thing, but make sure you keep detailed records about places you have lived. Keep a list of all previous addresses, including the dates you moved to and from any address. Note, this would include dorm addresses at college, etc. Also, try to maintain contact information for someone who knew you when you lived at each address.

Ditto for your employment/education history. They will want to know everywhere you have worked/studied, with start and stop dates. Again, if you can keep the contact info for a coworker or (better) your boss at each job it will help.
The length you have to go back varies - but I would keep 10 years just to be safe.
Offline

fiskerwad

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 753
  • Joined: 13 Nov 2004, 19:43
  • Location: 76101

Unread post17 Dec 2011, 10:48

Another item involving references, contact anyone you list as a reference and tell them they can expect a call/visit from the investigator. Much of the time, the investigator will ask the people you list if there are any other people that you knew and they could be added to the investigation.

On a SAR program I worked, we were required to go back 15 years on our history.
fisk
Mipple?
Offline

JetTest

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 565
  • Joined: 04 Jul 2007, 00:22

Unread post17 Dec 2011, 14:31

It has been many years since my initial SF86, and the periodic reviews ask for any significant changes, but as I recall the initial even askes for your driving record.
Offline

Rocky_LC

Active Member

Active Member

  • Posts: 102
  • Joined: 21 Aug 2004, 06:03

Unread post17 Dec 2011, 20:29

Once you document any transgression, you better write down what you said, so that there are no changes to your story on any subsequent (5 Year Update) reviews.

I agree that they look at everything, and everything. They typically don't ask the people you provide for information, they ask THOSE PEOPLE for other people to ask about you.

Have Fun.
Offline

JetTest

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 565
  • Joined: 04 Jul 2007, 00:22

Unread post18 Dec 2011, 05:20

To Rocky's point above, keep copies of everything you submit to make sure that you remain consistent in future updates.

Return to Future F-16 crew

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests