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Security Clearance Secrets

Part 1, Page 4

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Field Interviews

When conducting field interviews, the investigators will normally begin with individuals you list as references in the questionnaire. They then use those references to develop names of additional references, etc., ad infidium. These references will be asked questions about your honesty, reliability, and trustworthiness, and their opinion on whether you should be given access to classified information or assigned to a sensitive position or position of trust.

Your references will also be asked questions about your past and present activities, employment history, education, family background, neighborhood activities, and finances. During the investigation the investigator(s) will try to determine if you have had any involvement with drugs, encounters with the police, or problem drinking habits, and other facts about your personal history. The investigator(s) will attempt to obtain both favorable and unfavorable information about your background so an adjudicator can make an appropriate determination.

Subject Interviews

The objective of the subject interview is to obtain a complete picture of you as an individual so that an adjudicator can determine whether you will be able to cope with having access to classified or sensitive information without becoming a security risk. Therefore, the interview will be wide-ranging and cover most aspects of your life. During the subject interview, expect to be questioned about your family background, past experiences, health, use of alcohol or drugs, financial affairs, foreign travel, and other pertinent matters.

Remember, all these questions are asked for a purpose. The investigator is experienced in conducting these interviews. It is unlikely that anything you say will cause him or her shock or surprise. Be as candid as possible. The investigator will try to put you at ease if you become upset or uncomfortable. It is in your best interest to answer the investigator's questions in order for an adjudicator to reach a valid decision on your suitability to access classified information or be appointed to a sensitive position or position of trust.

Continued in Part 2, Approval/Disapproval Process

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