Security Clearance Process

Foreign Travel Reporting Reminder

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) issued Security Executive Agent Directive-3 (SEAD-3) in June 2017 outlining reporting requirements for all security clearance holders. Foreign travel was specifically called out and requires clearance holders to submit a travel itinerary and get approval prior to commencing on travel. Agencies can add their own specific reporting requirements as long as they meet the SEAD-3 standards. Depending on the agency, clearance holders may have sign a briefing form and agree to submit a debriefing form once travel is complete. The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency has templates for Department of Defense (DoD) components to use, but the Department of Homeland Security and other large agencies use their own internal data systems for tracking and reports.

Why is it important for clearance holders to follow the foreign travel reporting requirements? Picture this real-life scenario: Jane Doe is a Department of the Army civilian employee and possesses a Secret clearance. She decides to take a trip to Costa Rica before directly reporting in to a class held out in California and took her government laptop and DoD credential with her on the trip. While she was out and about in Costa Rica her hotel room got broken into and the computer and badge were stolen. When she got back to the U.S. she reported it to her supervisor and the first question he asked her was “What were you doing in Costa Rica?” Compounding the loss of her government computer and badge was her failure to report her foreign travel. SEAD-3 states failure to adhere to the reporting requirements could result in a clearance revocation. In this instance, her clearance eligibility was suspended immediately while an inquiry was completed.