Security Clearance Process

Defense Industry Chimes in on New Personnel Vetting Questionnaire

The Defense Industry, through the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA), submitted an op-ed providing their thoughts on the changes proposed to the Personnel Vetting Questionnaire (PVQ), the replacement to the Questionnaire for National Security Positions (SF-86) which was open for comments on the Federal Register. Here are some of highlights:

– The PVQ contains plainer language and is clearer than the SF-86; this will enable the applicant to provide more accurate information.

– Separating marijuana from other drugs is a good thing seeing as how 38 states have legalized it for use either recreationally or medically. The specific questions on marijuana use will help reviewers and adjudicators to determine if the use poses a security concern.

– INSA recommends also asking questions that make a clear distinction between marijuana and CBD products, which you can buy off the shelf without a prescription.

– The questions on supporting or being involved in political violence are appropriate but must be specifically worded to ensure the applicant doesn’t provide their own interpretation of what is being
asked. On the SF-86 the questions about anti government affiliations were too vague.

– As is the case with the SF-86, SF-85P, and SF-85, the new PVQ should be formatted to enable DCSA to run it through their algorithms to allow for e-Adjudication.

– INSA also recommends the “for routine use” be dropped so the information within can be shared across the security professional spectrum which includes Insider Threat.

Now that the window for comments has closed, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in collaboration with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) will review all of the comments and
determine whether to implement additions, change suggestions or deletions.