The Office of Personnel Management has retroactively increased the prices that agencies have to pay to have background checks done for new employees and those seeking security clearance, according to a July 21 OPM memo.
Federal agencies will have to process security clearance checks by hand until the Office of Personnel Management's digital system is back up and running, says a July 2 email statement from OPM.
The Defense Department is moving forward with a program to evaluate military, civilian and contractor personnel with security clearances to see if they are actually eligible for those clearances, says a June 24 post by government transparency expert Steven Aftergood.
The number of people holding security clearances for access to classified information decreased last year by about 12 percent or 635,000 people, says a recently released Office of the Director of National Intelligence report obtained by the Federation of American Scientists' Secrecy News blog.
The Defense Department reduced the number of employees and contractors who hold security clearances over the last two years by more than 700,000 people, according to documents obtained by open government expert Steven Aftergood on his Secrecy News blog.
Postal service contract drivers didn't always comply with security clearance requirements and the Postal Service isn't adequately monitoring the process, says a Nov. 20 USPS inspector general report. The Postal Service requires contract drivers to obtain non-sensitive security clearances, which the Postal Inspection Service Security Investigations Service Center must renew every 4 years, the report (pdf) says.
Retired Navy Rear Adm. Earl Gay said he would focus on fixing the Office of Personnel's background check system if the Senate approves his nomination as the agency's deputy director, a position that has been vacant for more than three years.
The Navy's top intelligence officer has had his security clearance suspended for the last year, a Nov. 4 Federal Times article says.
The government has made progress in bettering oversight of the security clearance process in the year since Aaron Alexis killed 12 people in a shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, says Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director Beth Cobert in a Sept. 16 blog post. Cobert, who also heads up the interagency task force reviewing the current security clearance process, says the pilot initiatives launched since the shooting have been shown to be effective and will be expanded to the most sensitive security clearance holders in fiscal 2016.
A Senate panel passed a bill Wednesday that would require random audits for those holding security clearances at agencies. The bill (S.1618), sponsored by Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), would require that everyone with a security clearance would get audited randomly twice over a five year period.