Clearance Self-Reporting: General Requirements

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All holders of a security clearance must keep their security office informed about anything that might have a bearing on their continued eligibility for access to classified information or that might signal an increased vulnerability to foreign intelligence targeting. Your cooperation in doing so is an important part of the "continuing evaluation" process.

The kinds of information that must be reported by all cleared personnel are described below. Personnel cleared for access to Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) or selected Special Access Programs (SAPs) may have additional requirements.

Related: Search for Security Clearance jobs.

Change in Personal Status: Changes in marital status, cohabitation, and change of name must be reported. Special requirements may apply if an intended spouse or partner is a foreign national.

If you are approved for access to Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) or are employed in certain Special Access Programs (SAPs), intent to marry or cohabitate must be reported well in advance to allow time for security clearance of intended partner.

Foreign Travel: Whether you are traveling on business or pleasure, foreign travel plans should usually be reported to your security office in advance of your travel. Your security office can provide the latest State Department advisories on hazardous conditions, identify any known security concerns regarding the areas where you will be traveling or organizations you will be dealing with, and provide general information on security risks during foreign travel.

You are required to report foreign travel plans to your security office under the following circumstances:

  • If you are in the US military or a civilian employee of the Department of Defense traveling on orders, you are required to receive an antiterrorism briefing prior to departure. If you are in the military, you are required to receive an antiterrorism briefing even if you are traveling on personal leave, and even if the travel is only to Canada or Mexico.
  • If you are approved for access to Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) or selected Special Access Programs (SAPs), you have additional requirements relating to foreign travel. Your security office should be advised well in advance of your departure, if possible.

Risks During Foreign Travel provides threat awareness information for foreign travelers but necessarily deals with those general threats that apply broadly to many countries. Specific criminal, terrorist, and intelligence threats differ greatly from one country to another and are changing constantly. Before traveling, you should have the most current information pertaining to the countries you will be visiting.

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Following your trip, complete any required post-foreign travel forms and report any unusual incidents that occurred during your travel.

Foreign Contacts: All cleared personnel must report contacts with individuals of any foreign nationality, either within or outside the scope of their official activities, in which:

  • "Illegal or unauthorized access is sought to classified or otherwise sensitive information.
  • The employee is concerned that he/she may be the target of actual or attempted exploitation by a foreign entity."

Persons approved for access to Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) and selected Special Access Programs (SAPs) have additional reporting requirements as discussed in Reporting Foreign Contacts.

A problem often arises in trying to follow policy on reporting foreign contacts. Many people do not recognize they are a target until the assessment and development process is quite far advanced. It is difficult to know when a foreign national who establishes friendly contact with you has an ulterior motive.

Financial Problems: Serious financial difficulties must be reported. This includes filing for bankruptcy, garnishment of wages, having a lien placed upon your property for failing to pay a creditor, or eviction from a residence for failure to pay rent. One reason for requiring that these financial problems be reported is to assist you in obtaining appropriate financial counseling.

Arrests: If you are arrested for any reason, this must be reported regardless of whether or not you were convicted or charges were dropped for lack of evidence. Minor traffic violations are the only exception to this reporting requirement. Some organizations define a minor violation as one for which the penalty is a fine of $150 or less.

Other Involvement With the Legal System: Any other involvement in legal or court proceedings should be reported if a) you are the target of the legal action, such as if you are sued for any reason, or b) if there is any possibility you might be required to discuss your job or organization under oath.

Psychological or Substance Abuse Counseling: When counseling is needed, you are encouraged to seek assistance from your employer-sponsored Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or other counseling service. Counseling is private and need not be reported if you sought the counseling on your own initiative. Counseling must be reported if you were advised to seek counseling owing to your work performance or other undesirable behavior.

Outside Activities: Any planned or actual outside employment or volunteer activity that could create a real or apparent conflict with one's responsibility to protect classified information must be reported to the security office.

Media Contacts: Any media inquiries about your job or organization should be reported. Ongoing personal contacts with media representatives who cover your organization or your subject area specialty should be cleared with security.

Pre-Publication Review: Any technical paper, book, magazine article, or newspaper article that you prepare for publication or for posting on the Internet, or lecture or speech that you prepare to give, must be cleared in advance if it contains information or knowledge you gained during your current or any previous classified job.

Please note that the resume you prepare when seeking another job may also come under this requirement. For some scientific or technical personnel working on Special Access Programs, an employee's resume may inadvertently reveal the existence or direction of the program.

Loss or Compromise of Information: If you inadvertently or accidentally lose or compromise classified or other sensitive information, this must be reported.

Related: For the latest veteran jobs postings around the country, visit the Job Search section.

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