Three letter agency Polygraph

Last year I was offered a position with a three letter agency. I passed the Polygraph but the offer was rescinded because of past drug use (over 15 years ago). I was told it was the frequency of the drug use that sent up a red flag. I had/have TS clearance prior to applying for this position. If I apply for a job that requires an SCI could they use the investigation I completed since I past my poly and nothing else was an issue?

Not an expert on poly but 3 letters didnt used to share info meaning you may have to start over on the fieldwork portuon but that may have changed. If you used equip the info should still be there so you wouldn’t have do that again. Some agencies require hand written 86 so you would have to redo the 86 if it was previously hand written.

It depends. If it was with NSA, they are a DOD agency, and the results might exist somewhere other than SC. If you were not granted access due to the poly, they often do not enter the information anywhere other organizations can access it. You would have to EOD for that information to be available.

Thank you VelcroTech for responding to my question. My poly wasn’t administered through NSA, I guess I need to ask my current FSO if he/she has access to SC. Thanks again for your response.

Thank you RB22 for responding to my question. I had a feeling I would have to start the process all over, which could take at least a year. I may just remain in my current position with my TS and call it a day. Thanks again.

More than likely, this will not exist in SC either. Other agencies, such as CIA will not complete the security processing until you EOD or onboard. So even though you may be eligible, the results of the investigation are not available. If you do reapply in 1 year, you will have to go through the entire process again.

I agree with you, I think the investigation has to be completed for anything to show in SC. Again, I really appreciate the feedback. Take care!

Hey 40oz, just wanted to chime in briefly to say I feel your pain and find it pretty lame that drug use so long in the past tripped to you up. Same thing happened to me; all clear except for I admitted smoking a lot of pot in college more than 15 years prior, nothing since. I get that it is their decision but we were all young once and moved on with our lives; the fact we are still being punished strikes me as very short sighted.

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Hey LDomino. Thanks for responding to my post. I agree, it is very short sighted. I think what is most important is that we we’re honest about our drug use and didn’t try to beat the system. Above a clearance at any level is based on trust. If they government can’t trust someone who is honest and upfront than I’m not sure who they are looking for.

Thanks again.

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This is concerning because I thought most IC agencies only cared about chronic use that was fairly recent, and the standard continues to evolve.

However some federal law enforcement agencies do publish much more stringent standards on their recruiting websites.

@40ounces @LDomino did either of your applications involve federal law enforcement? They have three-letter agencies as well :slight_smile:

Hey @sbusquirrel, mine did not. I was also under the same impression as you and was very forthright in my application, assuming that enough time had passed that it would be a non-issue. @Amberbunny2 likely has more insight into how candidates are assessed against these standards than we are.

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I can tell you the standard we worked off for 10 years: zero MJ in past 12 months, 3-4, maybe 6 times is experimental. Beyond that, you were a user. It’s easy to get walked to “you didn’t use everyday, weekends only?..” and have that counted as 52 or 104…heavy user, and they want 3 years no use. If you tapped into Cocaine, meth, ecstasy…might be 5 years. I told my candidates, be honest, but make them confirm a number back to you. If less than 10 total, make that emphatically clear. For those in College…Ritalin abuse is rampant. I would take great care to ask about study drug use and wait 18 months after last use if it was only a few.

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Here is where it’s confusing. Experimentation and recent use are no longer automatic disqualifiers. This only relates to the security clearance eligibility. There is the entire suitability process as well. So you might work out at another organization that requires TS/SCI, but you are not a good fit for places like NSA and CIA. That’s all that really means.

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I think you have it exactly right Velcro; folks like us may be eligible, but not be suitable. However my point still stands, as I think it is incredibly short sighted of any agency to hold the deep past against an otherwise qualified candidate, especially when it comes to drug use. Violent crime, sure, but smoking pot? This deep-sixes whole generations of candidates from certain states

Hi Amberbunny2, thanks for the post. I think you make some great points. I’m just shocked that drug use over 15 to 20 years ago could be used against me. I would have never applied had I known this would be an issue.

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Hi Sbusquirrel! Mine did involve a law enforcement three letter agency. From what I’ve learned, the agency made it more difficult during the my background investigation. I should have been grandfathered in or given the opportunity to withdraw my application had I known they changed the requirements halfway through the process.

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I know each agency is different. I’ve seen some police agencies that disallow any cocaine or LSD use. Even a single use. The vast majority will see 15 years of non use as an indication of following the rules. Demonstrating mature judgement. Non LE positions can still clear if use was 15 years prior.