Question about Top Secret Clearance.

CodeBloxCodeBlox Member Posts: 1,363 ■■■■□□□□□□
So I remember reading in another thread that the clearance isn't tied to the job. So my question is: If I went to another job that required it, how would I go about proving that I have it to the possible employer? Will they just contact the "right people" to find out?
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  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    Yes, you give them your social and there is a government database of some kind that tracks it. Thats how its been checked for me in the past anyway.
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  • CodeBloxCodeBlox Member Posts: 1,363 ■■■■□□□□□□
    okay thanks. I was thinking that they would need to go to the former employer and request certain documents. I than began to think that the former employer could refuse to produce the "documents". Is that ever a possibility?
    Currently reading: Network Warrior, Unix Network Programming by Richard Stevens
  • EveryoneEveryone Member Posts: 1,661
    Yup, it's all tied to your SSN. They look up your SSN in a system called "JPAS". The company will initiate a transfer of your clearance to an active status with them if they hire you.
  • instant000instant000 Member Posts: 1,745
    CodeBlox wrote: »
    okay thanks. I was thinking that they would need to go to the former employer and request certain documents. I than began to think that the former employer could refuse to produce the "documents". Is that ever a possibility?

    Hah.

    This brings up an interesting issue.

    I have a friend who left a job, not on good terms. Let's just say that he had a significant emotional event with the manager.

    He tried to get a job shortly thereafter, with a different company (in the same building) and that didn't go so well, and he lost that job also.

    He then tried to apply to another job, and they told him that his clearance was currently in "under investigation" status with the former employer, and they wouldn't bring him on, because of that reason.

    He's been out of work since November.

    Most of his experience ~10 years is with IDS/IPS, in the Air Force, and after he was out, as a contractor to the Air Force. During the 6-months he worked with me, he got exposure to Windows/HP-UX/Citrix/Vmware/Exchange/Blackberry, but that is only six months experience. The bulk of his exp was with the IDS/IPS stuff, and is the type of work he enjoyed too (so that counts for something).

    Tons of opportunity in this area, but if the clearance is truly screwed, then he's going to have to basically move to find a job, as there don't appear to be as many private sector opportunities in this area, and he gets tons of offers in other states.

    I contact him from time to time to encourage him. Maybe this time around once he gets back employed, he'll work on the schooling and certifications more. He's great on the experience front, but has no schooling or certifications...got complacent, I think.
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  • EveryoneEveryone Member Posts: 1,661
    instant000 wrote: »
    Let's just say that he had a significant emotional event with the manager.
    Very bad thing to do at a job that requires a clearance, and it may have cost him it.
  • shodownshodown Member Posts: 2,271
    They will look it up through JPAS"if DOD related" or another one of those systems if not DOD related depending on who you need the clearance through. There are even jobs at the post office which require high level clearances.
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  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,764 Admin
    Getting a clearance with the Federal government will require you to go through the e-QIP system to apply. The Wikipedia has a short write-up on e-QIP and the clearance process with some links to other resources.
  • vanquish23vanquish23 Member Posts: 224
    CodeBlox wrote: »
    So I remember reading in another thread that the clearance isn't tied to the job. So my question is: If I went to another job that required it, how would I go about proving that I have it to the possible employer? Will they just contact the "right people" to find out?

    What kind of job are you looking to do? Message me if you want.
    He who SYNs is of the devil, for the devil has SYN'ed and ACK'ed from the beginning. For this purpose, that the ACK might destroy the works of the devil.
  • MrAgentMrAgent Member Posts: 1,309 ■■■■■■■■□□
    His clearance is probably under investigation because he has to do a 5 year periodic update. At a TS level, it has to be done every 5 years.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,764 Admin
    MrAgent wrote: »
    His clearance is probably under investigation because he has to do a 5 year periodic update. At a TS level, it has to be done every 5 years.
    That's only if the company he is working for is renewing it. If he left the company they wouldn't be renewing it for him.
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,165 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Every agency doesn't use eQIP (wish they did because eQIP makes it very easy). Some use pdf files....
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  • xenodamusxenodamus Member Posts: 758
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    Every agency doesn't use eQIP (wish they did because eQIP makes it very easy). Some use pdf files....

    Dear god....the eQIP was bad enough.
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  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 648 ■■■■■□□□□□
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    Every agency doesn't use eQIP (wish they did because eQIP makes it very easy). Some use pdf files....
    And ironically eQIP is itself very complicated (though more simpler than the other procedures in use).

    Mine was, printed out, almost 100 pages long hahaha.
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,165 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Make sure you save a copy of that eQIP! If you ever go some place else and need to fill it all out again makes it ten times easier!
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  • colemiccolemic Member Posts: 1,568 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Same thing with the SF86, definitely keep a copy in a safe place. Otherwise you'll never remember all your old addresses and contact info for someone at each place.
    Working on: CCSP, definitely, maybe. On the twitters: @mcole1008
  • rwmidlrwmidl CISSP, CISM, MCSE, MCSA, MCPxAlot Worldwide AvailabilityMember Posts: 807 ■■■■■■□□□□
    colemic wrote: »
    Same thing with the SF86, definitely keep a copy in a safe place. Otherwise you'll never remember all your old addresses and contact info for someone at each place.

    I don't want to say this for certain, but I do recall when inputting information in to eQIP it does remember you if you have already input information (either for SF85 or 86). And eQIP does give you the option to save your information as a PDF so you can print (and def. keep a copy in a safe place).
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  • instant000instant000 Member Posts: 1,745
    colemic wrote: »
    Same thing with the SF86, definitely keep a copy in a safe place. Otherwise you'll never remember all your old addresses and contact info for someone at each place.

    I thought the eQIP was just an electronic version of the SF-86?

    I remember the first time I did the SF-86, many years ago, it was paper-based. When I had to fill out the e-QIP this time around, much easier.

    Also, what I used to fill out the SF-86 the first time around is a lot different than what I needed for the e-QIP this time around ... the first time around I had basically never had a job, lived at home, and had only gone to college ... not much background there to contend with. For this latest one, I ... have begun moving annually, the last few years, so I'm not sure how bad that looks on the record, to move around so much. (And it wasn't moving for jobs, I was changing the places I was staying, while working with the same employer.) It was a workout confirming people who could be contacted to vouch where I had stayed and worked.
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  • rwmidlrwmidl CISSP, CISM, MCSE, MCSA, MCPxAlot Worldwide AvailabilityMember Posts: 807 ■■■■■■□□□□
    instant000 wrote: »
    I thought the eQIP was just an electronic version of the SF-86?

    I remember the first time I did the SF-86, many years ago, it was paper-based. When I had to fill out the e-QIP this time around, much easier.

    Also, what I used to fill out the SF-86 the first time around is a lot different than what I needed for the e-QIP this time around ... the first time around I had basically never had a job, lived at home, and had only gone to college ... not much background there to contend with. For this latest one, I ... have begun moving annually, the last few years, so I'm not sure how bad that looks on the record, to move around so much. (And it wasn't moving for jobs, I was changing the places I was staying, while working with the same employer.) It was a workout confirming people who could be contacted to vouch where I had stayed and worked.

    Instant - my understanding is the moving around shouldn't be an issue, it may just take longer to get the background investigation done because agencies in the different locations have to be contacted, do their research etc (that is if you moved between different states). If you stayed in the same state, just different addresses/cities it shouldn't be that big of an issue. But I do agree in that getting people/neighbors to vouch that you lived at a certain address can be a pain. I guess worst case, if you didn't know any of your neighbors you could always give the apt. complex name and the investigator could contact the management company..
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  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,764 Admin
    rwmidl wrote: »
    Instant - my understanding is the moving around shouldn't be an issue, it may just take longer to get the background investigation done because agencies in the different locations have to be contacted, do their research etc (that is if you moved between different states). If you stayed in the same state, just different addresses/cities it shouldn't be that big of an issue.
    Yes, that does make the background investigation longer, especially if you've lived overseas. I've live/worked in the same county for the past 30 years, so my investigation went very quickly.
    But I do agree in that getting people/neighbors to vouch that you lived at a certain address can be a pain. I guess worst case, if you didn't know any of your neighbors you could always give the apt. complex name and the investigator could contact the management company..
    I was concerned about the, "I don't really know my neighbors" thing too. The special agent that did my SSBI said that was very common in today's world and they work around it. But I have a friend who was constantly being requested for additional references because everyone she listed wouldn't talk to the investigators.
  • EveryoneEveryone Member Posts: 1,661
    TS takes a lot longer than just Secret too. I had my Secret before I even got out of tech school for the Air Force. It was about a year later before they finished up my TS. The reinvestigation for my TS back in 2008 went a lot quicker than I thought it would, only a few months. I thought I was going to have problems, because I had gone through a bad divorce and even had my clearance temporarily suspended during the divorce. After I got everything cleared up though it wasn't an issue.
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 648 ■■■■■□□□□□
    LordQarlyn wrote: »
    And ironically eQIP is itself very complicated (though more simpler than the other procedures in use).

    Mine was, printed out, almost 100 pages long hahaha.
    got my soft copy stored in several places
  • higherhohigherho Member Posts: 882
    Everyone wrote: »
    TS takes a lot longer than just Secret too. I had my Secret before I even got out of tech school for the Air Force. It was about a year later before they finished up my TS. The reinvestigation for my TS back in 2008 went a lot quicker than I thought it would, only a few months. I thought I was going to have problems, because I had gone through a bad divorce and even had my clearance temporarily suspended during the divorce. After I got everything cleared up though it wasn't an issue.

    Yea the investigation processes now is much faster. I went from no clearance to a TS in 4 months.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,764 Admin
    higherho wrote: »
    Yea the investigation processes now is much faster. I went from no clearance to a TS in 4 months.
    The time it takes to clear any given person is highly dependent on how much diversity you have in your background (legal, financial, places lived and worked, previous clearances, etc.), the ability to satisfactorily interview your references, and the amount of backlog on the investigating agency's desk.

    Sometimes an investigation will take a long time to complete simply because of misplaced paperwork, or an investigator moves on to a new job and his/her cases are reassigned to another investigator that gives them a lower priority to complete. Just remember that obtaining a clearance is 99% a bureaucratic process, so there's no telling what (or where) the hang up is.
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 648 ■■■■■□□□□□
    JDMurray wrote: »
    The time it takes to clear any given person is highly dependent on how much diversity you have in your background (legal, financial, places lived and worked, previous clearances, etc.), the ability to satisfactorily interview your references, and the amount of backlog on the investigating agency's desk.

    Sometimes an investigation will take a long time to complete simply because of misplaced paperwork, or an investigator moves on to a new job and his/her cases are reassigned to another investigator that gives them a lower priority to complete. Just remember that obtaining a clearance is 99% a bureaucratic process, so there's no telling what (or where) the hang up is.
    Yep! Which was why my eQIP was almost a hundred pages long...
  • colemiccolemic Member Posts: 1,568 ■■■■■■■□□□
    instant000 wrote: »
    I thought the eQIP was just an electronic version of the SF-86?

    QUOTE]

    eQIP is intended to be the website that houses digitized copies of the traditional forms (SF-85, 86, etc.) Not a one-for-one replacement.

    My last go-round I had a word version of the SF86 I had to fill out, in the not-too-distant past.
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  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,764 Admin
  • powerfoolpowerfool Senior Member Member Posts: 1,649 ■■■■■■■■□□
    One thing to note is that if you have an active Secret clearance, you immediately qualify for an interim Top Secret clearance, which is good enough to start working in many situations.

    I have thought about going for a TS, as I could convince my employer to sponsor it... but, I figure it is too much hassle. I currently have a fairly flexible work schedule, and I think that would go away with any job requiring a TS.
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