Interim Clearance

Recently I was granted Interim secret clearance for DOD and I am asked to start the job. Going through several post here, I got to learn that interim secret clearance can be withdrawn/revoked/cancelled/suspensed and on those situation I will have to leave the job.

Problem with me is that I have a great job which actually pays more than the offered job at DOD. I dont want to leave my current job with even a hint of being jobless afterwards. I also asked the Point of contact if I would get to work on non classified information ( if my interim secret clearance is withdrawn) but they told me they have no information on this matter.

Also I got to learn from the posts here that on 2018, the agencies grant interim clearance to candidate only when they are extremely sure of the candidate getting final clearance as they dont want to waste their time and efforts.

I am so thankful that lot of information are already on the blogpost . I would request for some advice and suggestion on my matter.

This is the problem . . . In my case, my cleared position paid a little less then where I was working previously but cut my commute from about 1:20 to about 10 minutes . . .

No one here can tell you what to do. If you fully answered all of the questions on your SF-86, you should get cleared. If something pops up that you missed or didn’t think was important you might have a problem.

This is something that you need to decide for yourself.

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Yes, an interim can be withdrawn at any time for any reason, and yes, you may be laid off by your employer as a result. So it makes sense that this is an important career/job decision for you.

You should ask the recruiter and hiring manager about the availability of unclassified work and they should have an answer for you. You can also ask if you can just wait for the final clearance before starting.

Thanks everybody for the input. Doing some research on the internet, I found following:

Once an Interim Security Clearance has -been granted, the applicant has to sign a Conditional Letter of employment prior to the granting of an Entry on Duty date by the Human Capital Division (HCD).

(1)The applicant will return the signed Conditional Letter of Employment to HCD.
(2)HCD will forward the Conditional Letter of Employment to the Personnel Security Branch, Adjudications Unit.
(3)The applicant is not required to sign the Conditional Letter of Employment. The applicant has the option to choose to wait for the full investigation and granting of the full clearance. HCD can not withdraw the tentative offer of employment if the applicant chooses this option.

So, I think its best to wait for the final clearance decision ( in cases where the candidate already has a good paying secure job).


I now remember to have one glaring issues on data I entered on sf-86

I have downloaded hundreds of movies/songs from internet ( the equip asked if I downloaded any proprietary songs/videos/movies and I replied NO. The reason for that was I thought all the movies/songs I downloaded was not from party to whom they belonged rather from other 3rd party websites and they dont classify as proprietary.) .

Will this be a big issue for obtaining secret clearance? Every single other things are fine.

EdFarmerlll, thanks for sharing your experience. Do u remember if there was an option to choose to wait for final clearance while accepting your interim clearance conditions of employment?

Commute time in downtown is a big factor, I am also factoring this issue.

You may want to double check your source. The website from which this information came cites a DHS management directive. If you are up for a clearance with the DoD, this would not apply. Be aware of the truth behind what you read on the internet and if it applies to you.

If it comes out that you were downloading movies and music, yes it will be an issue.

People don’t recognize what they are doing when they down and your “explanation” of why you answered “no” shows that you still don’t understand what you have done.

You have been stealing intellectual property . . . From your statement, you would be OK if I gave a car, that I stole from someone else, because it isn’t my “property” that you are taking?

The government is taking this very seriously these days. Their concern? You have no issue with downloading information that you have no rights to and you have a history of doing so indiscriminately. Why wouldn’t you be expected to download or mishandle classified information?

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The question is like “Have you Introduced, removed, or used hardware, software, or media in connection with any information technology system without authorization, when specifically prohibited by rules, procedures, guidelines, or regulations”
What I believe they are asking is have you installed or removed software, hardware, etc. from a computer that did not belong to you. Such as one at work, in a public library, etc. Generally speaking things you do from your home computer that do not have any effect on computers belonging to others you shouldn’t have to declare.
Again, that is only my opinion and I believe this wont be big issue on secret clearance but it may cause problem for top secret. Please share your ideas/opinion on this .

I don’t think that you’re looking at the whole picture. You were committing a crime when you were downloading music and movies.


How long did it take for you to get granted interim secret clearance? I’ve been waiting almost 6 weeks.

Your answer is no. This question refers to computers for work.

about 3 months when there was not a backlog of applications.

Getting interim clearance is very tricky, they want you to leave ur current job and start working for them.

From the time you are granted interim clearance to the time you join/not join them, they will halt the background investigation process.

If you agree and start the work on interim clearance, they will resume the background investigation but if u decline to start the work on interim clearance they will stop your background investigation and it means ur interim clearance is revoked.

I am in a very confused state, where I have a higher paying private job with equivalent set of benefits and I dont want to leave my current job to b informed after 2-3 months that I may have to leave because of something came up in the investigation { They wont look at whole person concept until the final clearance is reached and they will allow u to work after the final clearance} .But in this process u are essentially jobless for may be good 3-9 months or may be even more.

Please kindly input your thoughts in this process, I would highly recommend everybody not to leave ur current job to start in interim. Please wait for final clearance and then u can benefit from everywhere.

Ultimately you have to ask yourself why you applied to a job that offers lower pay in the first place.

If you’re not willing to leave your current job now, then why would you leave it later? It is possible that they may rescind your offer and put the investigation on hold if you decide to not take the job.

You obviously had a reason to apply. If the situation has changed since then you should re-evaluate.

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It seems to me that you are having a lot of reservations with this job. I am a person that thinks if your happy in your current job and your boss is happy with your performance, then why move?

I currently work from home everyday so then only reason I would ever look for another job is if the pay was at least 30k more than what I am making, and the work was cutting edge Information Technology work. Since I am at the top of the federal pay scale, I would have to go into private industry and probably work 60 hours a week or more.

Not happening.

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I have taken a week time to figure out if background investigator see downloading music and movies as committing a crime.

Most of the background investigator have the opinion that downloading music and movies is a crime in United Kingdom and the moment you do that, you will be jailed for that but they dont see any single person ever been linked to crime just through downloading music and movies in United States. One of the reason they provide is people dont use direct source of music and movies to download and you should never say yourself a culprit ( If I were to drive the car you gave me and which you stole, I would never ever be labeled as a criminal. I can just say taht I was driving in good faith that u gave ur car and I drove it for my convinience. Same thing goes for downloading music and movies).

Buy yes, i would say if someone download movies from Netflix or download song from spotify then thats a crime and the person should be jailed for that. But if the same person downloads the same Netflix movie or spotify song from then its not a crime.

I was so curious on this matter, as I see every now and then people downloading, copying the materials from the Internet and using them.

A link was posted here recently regarding an applicant’s appeal to an SOR he received for illegal downloading. It is a crime. You can review it here. The applicant was eventually granted clearance, albeit after receiving an SOR and going through the lengthy appeal process. Take it for what you will.

Downloading copyrighted material from any source is a violation of U.S. copyright law. It is unlikely that anyone, in the U.S. will get jail time for downloading movies but fines and other punishment are doled out. You are stealing income from copyright holders.

If you can’t see the connection between a willingness to take advantage of illegal downloads and the risk of mishandling classified information, I can’t help you.

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HI EdFarmerlll, I personally beleive in good conduct and acting in good faith for every human being and organization. I have always discouraged use of illegal activity/eqipment and techniques for somebodys benefit. Out of curiosity I was trying to dig deep in this matter.

I fully understand and make everyone understand that lying in sf 86 will be caught during investigation and have always discouraged it.