Security Clearance Investigation Challenges and Reforms

Subcommittee on Government Operations
Subcommittee on Government Operations
Hearing Date: October 11, 2017 2:00 pm 2154 Rayburn HOB

PURPOSE:
  • To discuss the merits of the Department of Defense’s (DOD) plan to transfer the background investigation function from Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) National Background Investigation Bureau (NBIB) back to DOD.
  • To examine recent reports on problems with interim clearance investigations, improper adjudications, and potential reforms to the investigation process.
BACKGROUND:
  • The DOD released a plan in August 2017 to initiate a transfer of background investigations for DOD personnel from the NBIB at the OPM to Defense Security Services (DSS).
  • While DOD intends to reduce the current investigation backlog, critics claim the transfer will worsen the backlog.
  • Recent inspector general and media reports have described deficiencies in the clearance process, including agencies granting interim clearances to individuals with criminal backgrounds.

Witnesses and testimonies

Name Title Organization Panel Document
Mr. William Evanina Director, National Counterintelligence and Security Center Office of the Director of National Intelligence Document
Mr. Charles Phalen Director, National Background Investigations Bureau Office of Personnel Management Document
Mr. Garry Reid Director of Defense Intelligence, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Department of Defense Document
Mr. A.R. "Trey" Hodgkins III Information Technology Alliance for Public Sector Document