DOD Personnel Clearances: Government Plan Addresses Some Longstanding Problems with DOD's Program, But Concerns Remain

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Unauthorized disclosure of classified information can cause up to exceptionally grave damage to national security. The Department of Defense (DOD) is responsible for about 2 million personnel with clearances that allow them access to classified information. While most of these clearances are for servicemembers and DOD's employees and contractors, DOD is also responsible for contractors' clearances for more than 20 other agencies, as well as for congressional staff. Due to long-standing problems with DOD's clearance program, GAO designated it a high-risk area in January 2005. In February 2005, ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. November 9, 2005.

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Unauthorized disclosure of classified information can cause up to exceptionally grave damage to national security. The Department of Defense (DOD) is responsible for about 2 million personnel with clearances that allow them access to classified information. While most of these clearances are for servicemembers and DOD's employees and contractors, DOD is also responsible for contractors' clearances for more than 20 other agencies, as well as for congressional staff. Due to long-standing problems with DOD's clearance program, GAO designated it a high-risk area in January 2005. In February 2005, when DOD transferred its personnel security investigative functions to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the average wait for a top secret clearance governmentwide was over 1 year. In June 2005, Executive Order 13381 gave the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) authority to retain or assign to any executive agency any process relating to determinations of eligibility for access to classified information. OPM is assisting OMB with the development of the plan. GAO was asked to assess the government plan. This testimony will provide GAO's preliminary review of how well the government plan (1) adheres to the standards of comprehensive strategic planning and (2) addresses the timeliness and quality of the security clearance process. Finally, GAO will discuss the actions required to remove DOD's program from GAO's high-risk list."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • November 9, 2005

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  • June 11, 2014, 5:03 a.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. DOD Personnel Clearances: Government Plan Addresses Some Longstanding Problems with DOD's Program, But Concerns Remain, text, November 9, 2005; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc290866/: accessed September 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.