Security Clearance Denial

DSS Alert on Foreign Passports

On November 20, 2009 the Defense Security Service issued the following policy alert entitled, “Foreign Passport: Disposition Influences Personnel Clearance Eligibility.”

DISCO will not grant or continue a personnel clearance if the clearance applicant or cleared individual possesses a current foreign passport. In instances where the foreign passport is the sole potential disqualifying factor in the personnel clearance adjudication, DISCO will send a Joint Personnel Adjudication System (JPAS) message to the Facility Security Officer (FSO) stating that if DISCO receives reliable documentary evidence that the foreign passport has been destroyed, invalidated, or surrendered, DISCO will grant or continue the clearance. The passport holder may surrender the foreign passport to the FSO for safekeeping, but the FSO is not required to perform this service. . . .

Related Articles: Dual Citizenship And Security Clearances, Foreign Influence and Security Clearances

Comment Archive

  1. Avatar

    For any of the investigators around here…this is very timely, as my dual-citizen wife is about to take a job at a government facility. She’s not getting a clearance, but they’re still requiring her to either have her foreign passport destroyed by their own security office, or have it held by her home country’s embassy during her employment. She’s planning to have it destroyed.

    Given that she may be applying for a clearance someday, I presume that she should ask the FSO for a letter along the lines of that in the DSS policy alert, stating that they destroyed the passport. Will this be sufficient for the future, or is there some better course of action? How, in general, does a dual citizen prove that they don’t hold a foreign passport?

  2. Avatar

    It’s difficult to prove a negative. I’m not sure if an FSO can destroy a passport, because I believe a passport is the property of the government that issued it (not the property of the person holding the passport). If it were me, I would surrender the passport to the FSO and obtain a written receipt. Let the FSO determine the correct way of disposing of the passport. Dual citizenship and foreign passports are only part of the security concern covered by the Foreign Preference and Foreign Influence criteria in the Adjudicative Guidelines. It would be a rare situation where a person had dual citizenship and/or foreign passport but no other security concerns under the Foreign Preference and Foreign Influence criteria. Simply renouncing foreign citizenship and surrending a foreign passport is sometimes not enough to overcome these security concerns. See the 2 articles I wrote, one on dual citizenship and one on foreign influence, posted at