downloading music and security clearance

bhs00bhs00 Posts: 70Member ■■□□□□□□□□
Could you be denied a security clearance if you have ever downloaded pirated software or music?? I will have to pass a security clearance for a new job and I was wondering how that works. Anyone with a clearance know?
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  • Tyrant1919Tyrant1919 Senior Member Posts: 519Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Just don't lie...
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  • LarryDaManLarryDaMan Posts: 797Member
    They will not ask you about song downloading. If you do decide to volunteer that information, be sure to tell them that you will never ever do it again, and you will probably still get your clearance. Of course, all of this depends on what government agency it is and what their specific guidelines are.

    I personally would not volunteer that type of information unless you have been charged with or convicted of a related crime. Just be honest on all of the questions that they do ask. You would be suprised how forgiving they can be about past transgressions, but if you get caught in a lie you're toast!

    Here are the questions you will be asked:

    http://www.opm.gov/Forms/pdf_fill/sf86.pdf
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Depends on the agency. Most do not ask, but I do know of one for sure that will ask you if you ever downloaded music or software, how much/how often, and ask a dollar amount.
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  • LarryDaManLarryDaMan Posts: 797Member
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    Depends on the agency. Most do not ask, but I do know of one for sure that will ask you if you ever downloaded music or software, how much/how often, and ask a dollar amount.

    Yep, everything depends on the specific agency. Although, the only time I have been asked really crazy questions is on a polygraph. A lifestyle poly is not for the faint of heart.
  • bhs00bhs00 Posts: 70Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    it will be for a secret clearance. Missile Defense
  • empc4000xlempc4000xl Posts: 322Member
    LarryDaMan wrote: »
    Yep, everything depends on the specific agency. Although, the only time I have been asked really crazy questions is on a polygraph. A lifestyle poly is not for the faint of heart.



    Yes this is what I was going to bring up. The only time you will be subjected is the lifesytle poly. I remember one job before I got out was asking was I willing to take one. At the time I wasn't but I wished I didn't turn down the oppertunity.
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Polygraphs aren't as bad as people think. I believe that it is the nerves that really gets people. But yup lifestyle polygraphs can be scary...
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  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned
    LarryDaMan wrote: »
    They will not ask you about song downloading. If you do decide to volunteer that information, be sure to tell them that you will never ever do it again, and you will probably still get your clearance. Of course, all of this depends on what government agency it is and what their specific guidelines are.

    However, the RIAA has already found your address, and you will probably have broken legs by morning...
  • bellheadbellhead Posts: 120Member
    Never lie, if you downloaded music say yes. Being ambigious never hurt anybody. They are not asking whether you downloaded legally or illegally. Some of the biggest alt.2600 pirates I knew where guys I worked with in the military.

    If you lie during your poly and they know you did kiss your clearance goodbye. I have had a couple and they suck that's all I can say.
  • bhs00bhs00 Posts: 70Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I accepted. Everyone wish me luck.
  • whatthehellwhatthehell Posts: 920Member
    Best of luck! :D
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Good luck! What type of clearance? Secret? Secrets aren't bad to go through at all!
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  • bhs00bhs00 Posts: 70Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    yes its a secret clearance. Do they interview or is it just paperwork?
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    You'll be interviewed. They'll come to your home (sometimes your office) and go over all of your paperwork and ask to see your ID documents (birth cert or passport). Then line by line they will go over everything and note any changes (shouldn't be changes). I know for a TS they will ask about monthly bills vs what you make, might not do that for the secret. Then it is off to talk to everyone they can find about you. Bosses, references, old neighbors, credit checks, plus local police agency check. Usually, they will bring the credit check with them to make sure that it's you. Mine asked me to verify that a couple of things on there were mine. Should take about 6 to 8 months, maybe faster. Are they going to let you to work with an interim until you get the full clearance?
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  • Mrock4Mrock4 Posts: 2,360Banned
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    You'll be interviewed. They'll come to your home (sometimes your office) and go over all of your paperwork and ask to see your ID documents (birth cert or passport). Then line by line they will go over everything and note any changes (shouldn't be changes). I know for a TS they will ask about monthly bills vs what you make, might not do that for the secret. Then it is off to talk to everyone they can find about you. Bosses, references, old neighbors, credit checks, plus local police agency check. Usually, they will bring the credit check with them to make sure that it's you. Mine asked me to verify that a couple of things on there were mine. Should take about 6 to 8 months, maybe faster. Are they going to let you to work with an interim until you get the full clearance?

    This depends on the clearance. The military will not go to your home for a secret or generally even go over your paperwork more then once. For TS they did check everybody.

    For a secret I don't suspect them caring about you having downloaded music before. They're generally pretty lax with them. I've been through an extensive interview process including a trip to D.C., and have yet to be asked about downloading music. That being said, there was an open source article online detailing the NSA interview process, and they did care about downloading music.
  • ElvisGElvisG Posts: 167Member
    What Mrock4 said. I have a secret and my wife has a TS/SCI. You will not be interviewed for a secret unless they changed it recently.

    *edit
    I forgot to add that you will not be asked about your downloading of software or music. Goat dirty movies (can't say the real word), on the other hand, is a different story.
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaPosts: 5,163Mod Mod
    I'm guessing no company, requiring security clearance or not, cares what you do at home on your own internet connection. If you're dumb enough to download illegal software or music at work. . . that's a whole different story. If you'd ever been laid off, fired, or even just written up for software/music piracy at a workplace, you might have trouble landing a job that required security clearance. . . or any job, for that matter.

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  • networker050184networker050184 Posts: 11,962Mod Mod
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    You'll be interviewed. They'll come to your home (sometimes your office) and go over all of your paperwork and ask to see your ID documents (birth cert or passport). Then line by line they will go over everything and note any changes (shouldn't be changes). I know for a TS they will ask about monthly bills vs what you make, might not do that for the secret. Then it is off to talk to everyone they can find about you. Bosses, references, old neighbors, credit checks, plus local police agency check. Usually, they will bring the credit check with them to make sure that it's you. Mine asked me to verify that a couple of things on there were mine. Should take about 6 to 8 months, maybe faster. Are they going to let you to work with an interim until you get the full clearance?

    I have a secret clearance and also know a lot of people with them (military and civillian) and I have never heard of anyone going through a crazy process like this for a secret. Like Mrock and ElvisG stated, unless this is something super new you shouldn't have to be interviewed or be worried about downloading music.
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    For my Secret clearance with ICE there was an at home interview where they go over the paperwork. Every agency is different and I believe that is why the government is forcing everyone to form to a standard...
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  • bellheadbellhead Posts: 120Member
    ElvisG wrote: »
    What Mrock4 said. I have a secret and my wife has a TS/SCI. You will not be interviewed for a secret unless they changed it recently.

    *edit
    I forgot to add that you will not be asked about your downloading of software or music. Goat dirty movies (can't say the real word), on the other hand, is a different story.


    They would have never asked about the Goat dirty movies when I was in the Navy. Nobody would have had a clearance. When they call port of calls "Adult Disney Land" you get my drift.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Certification Invigilator Surf City, USAPosts: 11,258Admin Admin
    The gist of a security clearance is: Background investigations for national security positions are conducted to gather information to show whether you are reliable, trustworthy, of good conduct and character, and loyal to the U.S.

    Here are some docs that explain what is asked for and why (at least for a DoD or NATO clearance):

    http://www.opm.gov/Forms/pdf_fill/sf86.pdf

    http://newsletters.mcmanis-monsalve.com/assets/dpsacnews_apr9/instructionscompleting-sf86-nationalsecurity-4-6-09color(17)blocksonly.pdf

    Personal Conduct - Falsification

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  • 803badmutha803badmutha Posts: 1Registered Users ■□□□□□□□□□
    Sorry to revive an OLD thread, but had to bump with this, straight from the SF-86:

    27.3: In the past seven (7) years, have you introduced, removed, or used hardware, software, or media in connection with any information technology system without authorization, when specifically prohibited by rules, procedures, guidelines, or regulations or attempted any of the above?

    Seems like yanking a torrent file of a movie/music would fall under this specifically. Am I wrong?
  • nhprnhpr Posts: 165Member
    You probably should have started a new thread, but that sounds to me more as if it's a question of whether or not you've cracked (maliciously hacked) a machine.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Certification Invigilator Surf City, USAPosts: 11,258Admin Admin
    Specifically, if you have hacked without it being part of your job. I had to make that distinction in a security clearance interview once.
  • lochmoighlochmoigh Posts: 89Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Fellow ICE here as well, for me they did do a personal interview, neighbors, work mates, firends etc...
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    For my Secret clearance with ICE there was an at home interview where they go over the paperwork. Every agency is different and I believe that is why the government is forcing everyone to form to a standard...
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    It was different for each of us, but we all had an in person interview. It came down to timing, some of the guys from my office got interviewed there prior to leaving for the academy. I didn't and the guy called my house, when my parents told him that I was already at the academy. His reply was he'd do the needed leg work locally and then have someone come out to GA to talk to me. I will say a friend of mine is a contractor and I am positive no one spoke with him. Filled out his paperwork and a month later he was cleared (for a Secret). They are streamlining it as much as possible, but it always come downs to you. The more places you lived, worked, or traveled dictates how long it will take (and the level of clearance). I interviewed at a contractor once and it required we get a Confidential and then worked off the head of the companies TS. Dunno how that works exactly, but that job didn't pan out anyhow lol
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  • BlackoutBlackout CCENT, CCNA-Security, ITILv3, CompTIA S+, CompTIA A+ Raleigh, NCPosts: 512Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    Polygraphs aren't as bad as people think. I believe that it is the nerves that really gets people. But yup lifestyle polygraphs can be scary...

    This ^
    Old man told me a story about a guy married to a foreign national, they asked him if he ever talked to his in-laws and he said no. They asked him if they ever called the house, he said yes. Do you ever answer the phone? Yes and I give the phone to my wife.......So you do talk to your in-laws?

    The guy got his clearance pulled for it. Scary indeed.
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  • tpatt100tpatt100 Posts: 2,989Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I had interviews for my Secret Clearance. They also interviewed some of my personal contacts I put down.
  • hey101hey101 Posts: 1Registered Users ■□□□□□□□□□
    i have downloaded files like photoshop, music, and movies...will i fail the security clearance for nsa?
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,134Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    When they ask the question about downloading, you must answer honestly. Also, they will ask when was the last time you downloaded something. It is my understanding that at various hiring events, applicants were told if they downloaded something illegally in the past year to reconsider applying. Fact of the matter is, downloading is stealing regardless of how you may feel about anyone actually getting hurt or not. It is no different then walking into a store and pulling that software, cd, or dvd off the shelve. That being said, any background check is to look at the whole person so it is to your advantage to be upfront and honest. Will you be denied a clearance based solely on that, where everything else is clean? No one here can give you an answer to that, it all comes down to the person or persons who will review your case and make that final determination.
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