How Defense Contractors Request A Security Clearance

How Personnel Security Clearances are Granted

The Defense Industrial Security Clearance Office (DISCO) processes security clearances for organizations falling under the NISP. According to Executive Order 12968-Access to Classified Information, employees should not be granted access to classified information unless they possess a security clearance, have a need to know the classified information involved, received an initial security briefing and have signed a nondisclosure agreement.

The Facility Security Officer (FSO) is a position that the defense contractor must appoint during the FCL approval process. The FSO implements a security program to protect classified in information. They also request investigations for employees who require a security clearance. What this means is, all cleared contractors must appoint an FSO. It could be the business owner in a small organization or an employee with an additional duty. The primary qualifications of an FSO are to be a US Citizen and have a PCL at the same level as the FCL. It is possible for an FSO to be the sole employee in the company.

The contractor and DSS have joint responsibilities with the PCL process as they do with the FCL process. When the FCL is being granted, key employees should complete a Questionnaire for National Security Positions, also known as Standard Form (SF 86). Part of the process includes ensuring that the applicants are US Citizens. They should submit the application to the FSO who then submits applications to DISCO. An investigation is conducted and the central adjudication facility (CAF) makes a security clearance determination. The determination is then entered into the Joint Personnel Adjudication (JPAS), the Department of Defense provided system where security clearance information is stored. Other government organizations may have different systems. Once entered into JPAS, the FSO can grant access based on need to know and the clearance level.

The SF 86 is the main area the applicant can affect the speed of the security clearance process. A properly filled out application form is the key. Incomplete or inaccurate information is the number one cause of clearance delays. Names, addresses, telephone numbers, and dates of birth for relatives should be gathered as background research. Fortunately the SF 86 form is online and requires only filling out once. When a clearance is up for renewal, the applicant can log in their SF 86 and make updates.

DSS and FSOs use JPAS to update personnel information. This system allows instantaneous updates of records as well as notification of access, denial or revocation of clearances. At the time of this writing, there are more than 89,000 users of JPAS and 23,000 are from defense contractors.

Not everyone investigated is guaranteed a security clearance. In some instances a clearance can be denied, revoked or suspended. The employee’s background is investigated thoroughly for the initial clearance and again every five to fifteen years while maintaining a clearance and depending on the required security clearance level. In the event that a security clearance is denied, suspended or revoked, DSS will also notify the FSO. The FSO will then deny access to classified material to that employee and update JPAS.

The personnel security clearance investigation

Prior to granting a security clearance, DSS will ensure the proper security clearance background investigation is conducted. Two primary types of investigation included the Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI) and the National Agency Check with Local Agency Check and Credit Check (NACLC).

The SSBI is the most detailed investigation and is used to process TOP SECRET (TS), and Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) clearances. The FSO initiates the security clearance request with DSS through JPAS. The FSO notifies the employee to begin the application by filling completing Electronic Questionnaires for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) Standard Form 86 (SF 86) to verify employment. The federal investigator verifies the information by interviewing references, employers or others who have known the subject socially or professionally. The investigator may use names identified on the SF 86 and as discovered during the course of the investigation. To facilitate an efficient investigation, applicants should complete the SF 86 accurately and completely.

The SSBI will also cover periods of employment and education institutions attended. The applicant should be accurate about the attendance and degrees, certificates or diplomas credited and list contacts or references as completely as possible. Other areas subject to investigation include places of residence, criminal records and involvement with law enforcement and financial records. The investigators may contact those with social and professional knowledge of the applicant, and divorced spouses.

The NACLC is required for SECRET and CONFIDENTIAL levels of security clearances. Investigations are conducted to determine suitability for a clearance, fingerprint classification and a background check using a search of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) database. Investigators also conduct a credit check based on residence, employment and education locations. The investigation will also cover law enforcement issues at all locations listed on the SF 86. Once assigned a case, investigators will use the submitted request to research factors about the employee’s life to help determine suitability. The suitability is assessed by a trained adjudicator based on an approved background investigation.

The granted security clearance is honored across agencies and no additional investigations should be conducted to access classified information at the same level or lower of the PCL. If an employee has a security clearance granted by any agency with an investigation meeting the same or higher requirements, access to classified information can usually be granted without further investigation.

What Type of Buildings Require Fire Clearance Certificate or FIRE NOC

With the impact of the modernization and changing need of the society, there is a curving trend of the high-rise buildings in India. The objective is not only restricted to the residential purpose but extended to the business, communities, and even services. From the last decade, there is a tremendous growth in the real estate industry and now the fully occupied high-rise or multiplex buildings can be witnessed in urban cities of India.

The buildings above 15 meters are called as high-rise buildings that are in the form of malls, hospital, apartments, and multiplexes. Unfortunately, some major accidents had taken place in such buildings which are whistleblowers to stand for the accident-free environment. To ensure safety, the Government has provided provision to armour with the latest Right to Information rules. There are also amendments in the factories act 1948 that prescribes provisions related to the hazardous process. Accordingly, all types of high-rise buildings should have Fire Clearance Certificate or FIRE NOC.

What Is FIRE NOC or Fire Clarification Certificate?

FIRE NOC or Fire clearance certificate is a No Objection Certificate indicating that the building is designed as per the norms and regulations that a high-rise building must have to avoid any hazardous accidents. It is issued by the Fire department of the respective state before the building construction. The Building authority applies to the FIRE NOC before the construction with enclosing the appropriate building plan. The building plan should have complete details, including structure, a design of the staircase, electrical power supply, lift design, open space, Fire exit, raw material, design and additionally it should have provision for:

1. Fire safety measures, Fire extinguishers and Fire evacuation measures that are going to be incorporated in the building.

2. Minimizing the spread and intensity of Fire within the building and any other building.

3. Controlling the generation or spread of smoke to the possible extent.

4. The implementation of the device that can detect the Fire and can warn the occupants or user.

5. Immediate access to the device to control the rising Fire.

6. The design should be designed by the registered architect.

FIRE NOC for Hospitals:

The government provided complete instruction in ‘part 4’ of the National Building code of India-2005, “Fire and life safety” for the Fire prevention and Fire safety of the hospital building. A hospital building plan should inculcate the following Hospital Engineering Service Provision for the Fire precaution as per the NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers).

NABH provisions for the Fire precautions in the Hospital:

• There must be an approval for the installation of the Firefighting devices.

• Easy access to the control room location.

• Control panel needs to get connected with Fire detection or alarm system.

• Availability of the Pump rooms including electrical as well as the diesel room.

• Arrangements for filing Fire Tenders.

• In case of emergency, there must be a 4-way Fire inlet.

• Forced Ventilation

• Easy access to Fire Resistant tanks

• Fire Drill should be performed.

• Proper availability of yard hydrants and landing hydrants and should be on strategic location.

• 2 ways Fire heads.

• Hose Reels and Landing Hydrants

• Wet Riser system

• First Aid equipment should be in working condition.

• There should be a provision of an escape route and emergency exit.

• An automatic device for the smoke or heat detectors.

• Fire alarm system and Fire extinguishers

Regulations as per National Building Code 2005:

1. All high- rise building must have Fire NOC as per the zoning regulations of the respective jurisdiction.

2. The Road should be more than 12 meters wide especially hydraulic platform and the turntable ladder.

3. Entrance size should not be less than 6 meters or 5 meters.

4. Minimum 40% of the users or occupants should be trained to perform the proper operations of the Fire safety devices or evacuation system.

5. There should be proper open space and emergency exit stairs on the external wall of the building in addition to the regular stairs.

6. It should be enclosed with smoke-stop-swing-doors of two-hour Fire resistance on the exit to the lobby.

How to Apply for a Fire Clearance Certificate:

The preformatted application form along with the business plan and documents have to submit to the FIRE Service Department of the respective state. The application should be properly sealed and signed by the authorized civil engineer or authority. It should include complete site address and the all above-mentioned provisions in the business plan as well as documents. Nowadays, many states are accepting online application forms but the enclosures will be the same. The process of issuing Fire NOC is exempted from the fees.

Documents Required:

1. 2 sets of building plans authorized by the Building Authority.

2. Model of the building.

3. Complete drawing of the building and surroundings.

4. Complete building plan with the above mentioned mandatory details.

5. The checklist should be certified by the authority.

Time Period Required for Issuing of FIRE NOC:

If the application is properly filled up with the accurate business plan, it normally takes 4 weeks to issue the Fire Clearance Certificate from the Fire Service Department.

Does Fire NOC Have Validity?

Under Rule 35, Fire NOC is valid for 5 years for residential buildings and 3 years for the nonresidential buildings.

It is highly recommended for all users to strictly follow provisions and procedures not only in the paper but practically. Fire safety and precaution is one of the important factors which are concerning everyone in the hospital industry. The main aim of the Fire safety design is to ensure the life safety, continue functioning and proper protection.

Note: List of documents and process may vary as per the state norms.

House Clearance – What to Look For

House clearance can be a tricky and emotionally demanding business. At the very least you’re dealing with the removal and disposal of bulky and sometimes dangerous contents. It takes time and effort that you should be spending on your work or family. It’s also quite likely that the process will involve emotional ties, particularly in those cases where it follows bereavement. It certainly isn’t something that most people will want to tackle for themselves.

How do you find a responsible house clearance company though, and what should you look for in one? While there are plenty of these companies in existence, how do you know that the one you are thinking of using is a responsible, effective one?

First, check that the company you are thinking of using is fully licensed and insured. They should be registered with the environment agency to deal with any potentially hazardous waste in the house. They should also have enough insurance to cover any damage accidentally inflicted on the house in the removal process. See if they are members of the UK House Clearance Association, which has a code of conduct for its members, and requirements of their operating standards.

Then, make sure that they are able to do everything you want. Will your house clearance involve removing carpets and electrical goods? Check that the company you are considering can deal with both. Will it involve bulky items that will need careful removal? Are they able to deal with unusual situations, such as clearing a caravan or boat? Remember that industrial sites and residential sites are two very different prospects, so make sure that you hire a company able to cope with your particular circumstances in a professional manner.

Also consider what the company is going to do with the waste once it has removed it. In these environmentally conscious times, many of us are making a determined effort to recycle, so choose a company that is committed to doing so effectively. Not all of these companies recycle the same amount. Some will do the bare minimum required by the law, if that, while others will go out of their way to ensure that everything that can be recycled or reused is. Choose an option where you know they aren’t just dumping the problem and running.

Don’t forget to consider the business aspects of the relationship. How much is it going to cost to have the location cleared, and what are you getting for that? Will it include cleaning, or just the removal of objects? How quickly will they be able to do the job, allowing you to get on with whatever you have planned for the property? Think about the customer service side of things too. Do you really want to be at a deceased relative’s house to let in the people taking away their unwanted property? If not, look for a company that will work with solicitors or agents.

Look for a company that is professional and competitively priced, but don’t automatically go for the cheapest. Take the other considerations into account too, and you’ll find a company that will give you a much better house clearance for it.