How Long Is A Poly Good For?


Have a couple questions:

  1. If poly was done and person was read in cause everything was good, how long is a poly good for before it “expires”? I know TS is ~5 years and so on with the other ones.
  2. This might be a silly question but if the person worked in a position that required a poly, but only worked it for one month before resigning, is that person able to apply to other positions that require a poly? I’m under the assumption that once you get read in, you’re able to apply to other positions that require a poly.

Thank you

Here’s my take on things:

  1. This can vary a lot and I think there may be a difference if you are no longer in an ‘active’ status and try to get back in. Also may vary if you try to go someplace other than the agency that originally sponsored you.

  2. You can list the date on a resume and let the potential employer figure out if they want to talk to you.

You only stayed a month at that job? That might raise some questions in and of itself. I know people change jobs more frequently these days but that’s pretty quick… and it sounds like you want another shot. Oh well the worst they can is not give you an interview.

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Thank you! I had actually been working as a contractor at a lower clearance for a few years, got switched over to that position and left on good terms, had personal issues I had to deal with.

I probably shouldn’t post because it doesn’t answer your question, but… It continues to amaze me that we still use the polygraph. They are a joke, and not a very funny one. Think junk science or no science at all. Sure, polygraphers will attest to their accuracy and reliability, they want to be employed. They measure heart rate, respiration rate, and perspiration and that supposedly determines truthfulness. In fact, they’re probably less reliable than flipping a coin. The originator debunked his own invention. But we are stuck with it because they to have some tool to approve or disapprove. Trouble is, liars pass and truth tellers fail, and that isn’t junk science.

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That makes sense and should address any concerns that may come up. Seems like the job market is still pretty hot for cleared individuals so hopefully you will do well in your job search.

It’s also funny because people admit to things when they are hooked up that they always forgot to mention while they had unlimited time filling out their SF86. There are just a handful of agencies that use the poly and it doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon, nor do they have problems with applicants.

Some agencies that use to use them only on a random or spot-check basis seem to use them routinely now. And the polygraph community seems to have convinced themselves that it is more accurate than ever before.

The agencies that I am referring to use it as an entry requirement. There is no situation where you will be a full-time employee without passing either a CI or FSP first.

They didn’t convince themselves because they know they’re non-scientific guesses. Somehow they convinced their clients.

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Related to what velcroTech said, regardless of whether the polygraph can, on its own, detect lies, it is a useful tool. I doubt it works against actual insider threats or foreign intelligence, but it is apparently quite good at deterring people from lying on their SF86 and for extracting more information. This is because most people are bad liars and aren’t going to be coached in how to beat the polygraph, so they will rather avoid the possibility of being caught in a lie.

In this sense, a counterintelligence polygraph is nearly useless since your ‘common person’ isn’t going to need to lie about being involved with foreign intelligence services. However, a full-scope polygraph could be useful if the requesting agency wants to have a bit more trust in common employees and is particularly worried about how many times they have smoked marijuana.

And keep in mind, it isn’t just the polygraph machine, but the machine and the examiner, who is trained to conduct an interview in which the box itself only plays a part.

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The polygraph, as generally agreed by professionals, has little scientific validity. Its main use is as a tool for intimidating unwitting applicants into making admissions that had not been disclosed previously in the application process.

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