DOD Personnel Clearances: Some Progress Has Been Made but Hurdles Remain to Overcome the Challenges That Led to GAO's High-Risk Designation

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Threats to national security--such as the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and high-profile espionage cases--underscore the need for timely, high-quality determinations of who is eligible for a personnel security clearance which allows an individual to access classified information. The Department of Defense (DOD) needs an effective and efficient clearance program because it is responsible for about 2 million active clearances and provides clearances to more than 20 other executive agencies as well as the legislative branch. Despite these imperatives, DOD has for more than a decade experienced delays ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. June 28, 2005.

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Threats to national security--such as the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and high-profile espionage cases--underscore the need for timely, high-quality determinations of who is eligible for a personnel security clearance which allows an individual to access classified information. The Department of Defense (DOD) needs an effective and efficient clearance program because it is responsible for about 2 million active clearances and provides clearances to more than 20 other executive agencies as well as the legislative branch. Despite these imperatives, DOD has for more than a decade experienced delays in completing hundreds of thousands of clearance requests and impediments to accurately estimating and eliminating its clearance backlog. In January 2005, GAO designated DOD's personnel security clearance program as a high-risk area. In February 2005, DOD transferred its personnel security investigative functions and about 1,800 positions to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), after 2 years of negotiation between the agencies. This testimony provides an update on the challenges that led to GAO's high-risk designation. It identifies both the positive steps that have been taken to address previously identified challenges and some of the remaining hurdles. GAO will continue to monitor this area."

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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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  • June 28, 2005

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  • June 11, 2014, 5:03 a.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. DOD Personnel Clearances: Some Progress Has Been Made but Hurdles Remain to Overcome the Challenges That Led to GAO's High-Risk Designation, text, June 28, 2005; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc294752/: accessed July 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.