View from the otherside of the Background Investigator credentials.


You’re kidding ! Come on !? Do people think they can get away with hiding something like that !?


Post edited for editing of post


Please tell me this isnt what my life will be after I start as a Investigations Case Reviewer for CACI on Monday.


Welcome to the ninth circle of hell!

Typical Background Investigation Report

I’ve empathy but as I sit and pass day 538 on my SSBI/T5 my empathy has limits. There is a performance standard that NBIB is required to meet…and it’s not 538+. Perhaps those standards should be revisited because if they mean nothing why have have them.


I ask for and expect no empathy. I was trying to use humor to describe a process that is not clean and straightforward. We are dealing with humans - hundreds and thousands of humans - each having the chance to add to the “fog of investigation”.

Why are you on day 538? I don’t know. My area has a backlog but I am still working FY 17 and newer cases. You mention standards - standards that were artificially created by Congress in an attempt to speed up the process. There was no science or research to show that the process can clear someone for a TS within X days.

You can’t speed up the process by flogging the ship’s crews. If the ship is an old wooden cutter - it can only go so fast on the water. My boss has chimed in many times that we are using 1947 technology and standards to determine who can have a clearance… We need to look at the whole picture from top to bottom - starting with - who really needs those nifty TS/SCI clearances? Why do we have PRs on military folks that have severe disciplinary actions and are on their way out? Why do we allow people to apply for security clearances with the “hope” they will pass? Why do we continue to complete a case when serious disqualifying issues are discovered? Why do we insist that we speed up a process that is critical to security? What can we do to shake out the people that should not have a clearance quicker?

I wish I had the answer. I wish somebody had the answer on how to realistically sped up the process that is cost-effective and does not degrade security standards.


Agreed. “Standards” is a bit of a stretch. More like guidelines. Arbitrary, not backed by research or analysis. Hundreds of thousands of applicants who likely need some type of field work done, and across the country.

I’ve said it before: there’s two short term solutions–increase and retain personnel, and responsibly reduce fieldwork. Good luck with both.


Don’t worry, it’s going to all get way better under DSS.



I was reading a DSS document, public domain, about how their failure with proposed technology, under funding the background investigation process (to include not hiring/replacing agents) and poor training created a 600,000 case backlog for DoD. The document was the prepared statement for a Congressional hearing from 2000, about the late 90s to 2000 period.

DoD is relying too heavily on the CE taking care of all their problems. The executive management at DoD have forgotten that you still need a field person to talk tot the neighbor/family/friend/boss to develop the issue that leads to the information source.

Just this last week, I had a case where the listed reference led me to an unreported alcohol arrest and additional misdemeanor arrests that were reportable. The law checks were done - but the arrest was from a neighboring entity, again.


You know I really enjoy your stories. I know some of us on here want to hear more about the life of a background investigator. By the way I loved your last candidate.


LOL only 9th? in the Buddhist religion we are taught there are endless amounts of hell. I think my favorite hell has to be the ice hell.


Yes it is most definitely this bad


You contact your FSO about your long long wait?


It’s a federal civil service position with DHS OIG. There is no FSO but I’m in fairly constant contact with DHS OIG Security Office and the Human Resource Office (weekly check ups). I’ve outlasted two HR specialists and actually gone from a GS-11 position to landing a GS-12 position during the wait. I’ve interviewed for GS-13 positions as well so may get another “promotion”. If I was getting a signing bonus, maybe GS-5 pay during the wait, had some guarantee of back pay or perhaps a step increase due to the delay I would be less stressed. Heck even if I had some information or some idea of when it will end. The lack of details and nearly two year wait is not efficient use of government resources and takes a toll on future federal bureaucrats. Some most certainly aren’t going to show up to work happy to have waited and eager to contribute 100%. Some will be bitter potentially becoming insider threats themselves. Congress didn’t set the performance metric previous listed on the agency did in accordance the GPRA. NBIB took over a disaster but I’ve yet hear leadership admit its a disaster. The GAO report stated NBIB has no plan to address the backlog nor have a read anything put out by NBIB addressing the backlog. DSS could be a solution if they hire there own personnel not cannibalize NBIB. NBIB should be left whole to address its own case load while DSS is staffed up to support the needs of DODs case load.


Are you currently a Fed?


I am currently a Fed.

IRTPA of 2004 from Congress set the “thou shall” metrics that I am talking about.


Well there was a post somewhere on this site in which someone who had served 4 years in federal prison was inquiring about his chances for obtaining a security clearance. Go figure!


Yes and he tried to say he worked for DOJ because he had a job in the Prison Laundry.


Well, he could have also listed UNICOR as his employer!


Actually I mentioned this to the guy, Since many yrs ago I worked for the BOP.