ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Honesty and Mitigation are the Keys to Obtaining a Security Clearance

Updated on December 24, 2010

Honesty and Mitigation are the Keys to Obtaining a Security Clearance

Obtaining a security clearance is very advantageous for someone seeking employment either directly with the United States government or with a company that works with the United States government on a contractual basis. From overseas contractors, to the men and women that serve our wonderful nation in the Armed Forces, obtaining a government security clearance is necessary for many of the positions available to the public.

For those seeking a security clearance, be prepared for thorough background investigation that will include an in-depth look into your employment, financial and criminal histories. So what happens if you have made mistakes in the past and your history isn’t as squeaky clean as you would like it to be? Don’t worry about it. Past mistakes are not an automatic bar from security clearance eligibility. However, how you handled those mistakes may very well be.

The Truth, The Whole Truth and Nothing But The Truth

When applying for a security clearance, you will have to fill out government form SF-86 which is the Questionnaire for National Security Positions. This questionnaire will cover nearly every aspect of your life such as residential history, relatives, financial history and of course your criminal history. The key to filling this questionnaire out is to be extremely honest in all of your responses.

If you experimented with marijuana while you were in college and it is within the time frame in question, disclose the information. If you were arrested for a DUI two years ago, give as much information about the circumstances as possible. If you got into a financial bind that led to a foreclosure or repossession, be as forthcoming with the information as possible. No matter how bad you think it is, lying about it will only make it worse and can mean an automatic denial of a security clearance.

The investigator and adjudicator know that no one is perfect but they also want to ensure that the person seeking the security clearance is honest before entrusting them with access to information that can cause grave damage to national security if it were made publicly available.

Mitigation Makes it Better

Mitigation is also extremely important when a candidate has had some occurrences of trouble or poor judgment in the past. The investigator and adjudicator will want to know what the candidate has done to fix the situation and ensure that it will not happen again in the future.

In the example of the candidate that experimented with marijuana in college, time could be a mitigating factor. How long ago did the marijuana use occur? The frequency of usage could also be a mitigating factor. Was the candidate involved in regular marijuana use or was it a one -time occurrence? The step or steps taken to ensure that a problem does not re-occur is also an important mitigating factor. For example, has the candidate completed drug counseling or similar programs in an effort to avoid drug use in the future? Even in more serious cases, mitigation can be the difference between the approval and denial of a security clearance.

Security clearances are not easy to obtain and should not be considering what is at stake. Everyone makes mistakes but how a person deals with those mistakes is what an investigator and eventually an adjudicator is going to be interested in when determining the outcome of your investigation. I am not an expert on the subject by any means but I can speak from experience. Don’t think that you can’t go for that dream job because of a few bumps in the past. Honesty and mitigation go a very long way in helping to determine the suitability of a person wanting to serve this great nation of ours.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)