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26 MARCH 1998

1. On 25 MARCH 1998, a public meeting of the Security Policy Advisory Board was held at Building 107. Board Chairman General Larry Welch, USAF (Ret) presided with board members Ms. Nina Stewart and Rear Admiral Thomas Brooks, USN (Ret) present. Mr. Dan Jacobson, Director, Security Policy Board Staff and Mr. Terry Thompson, Responsible Federal Officer were also present. Numerous members of the public were also in attendance and participated.


2. The meeting was opened by Mr. Thompson who welcomed all in attendance and introduced the Board. General Welch then added his welcome and noted that one of the primary functions of the Security Policy Advisory Board is effective communication with the private sector.


3. Ms. Cindy Cordon, ranking MOU representative, was then introduced and began a discussion of issues important in the industrial arena. She indicated that the policy making process, in particular as it pertains to the NISP, lacks a device for closure. For example, Chapter 8 has been discussed for over three years and remains unresolved. She took cognizance of the difficulty attending computer security but nevertheless stated there needs to be one authority who can move the process forward. When queried by the Board as to what is the existing dispute resolution process Mr. Jacobson indicated there is an ISOO oversight committee with that responsibility. Chairman Welch requested a copy of the structure of the existing dispute resolution mechanism be forwarded to him. The Board then asked whether this impasse was limited to Chapter 8 and Ms. Conlon replied a similar situation exists with Chapter 10. The Board stated that it would appear unlikely that one individual could be designated as a resolution officer but perhaps a few members of senior management could be so designated.

4. Ms. Conlon then indicated she read the recent article by Richard Lardner in THE GOVERNMENT EXECUTIVE and takes issue with some conclusions of the author. She recalled a time before the advent of the Security Policy Board and its structure when different government security officials didn't know one another and the security environment was considerably less coordinated than it is today. She has observed enormous progress to date---with much more progress needed. The board agreed with her assessment noting that forward movement is slow but real. To that end, the Joint Security Commission will reconvene shortly to evaluate the status of the implementation of its original recommendations.

Upon receipt of a description of the dispute resolution mechanism for the IS00 Oversight Committee, the Board will explore the available options to finalize chapters Eight and Ten.

5. Ms. Charlene Wright, C3I, then addressed the Board on the issue of reciprocity outlining five elements. She began by stating the SF 86 was implemented in DOD 1 January 1996 and DOD is currently working in close conjunction with OPM in developing and implementing the EPSQ. In implementing the EPSQ, the twin issues of an electronic signature and a fingerprint card are somewhat problematic and must be resolved. The Board asked what the options were for an individual who did not have access to the Internet? For such filers hard copy will remain a viable alternative. The Board inquired whether a new SF 86 needs to be completed each time a cleared individual accepts a new tasking from another agency? An additional SF 86 is currently required to bring an individual's background up to date, despite the fact that no background investigation may occur. A form is under consideration which facilitates the transfer of background data without resort to completion of an additional SF 86.

6. Ms. Wright then addressed the area of investigations and noted that the SSBI was adopted in October 1991 and that a common scope was finalized in March1997 with the President's signature on the Investigative Standards. She also indicated Annex B of DCID 1/14 outlines quality standards which are to be followed by the community. In accordance with DOD 5200.2-R, DOD has long accepted investigations by other agencies.

7. Turning to adjudicative and training matters, Ms. Wright indicated that revisions in adjudicative guidelines were begun in 1990 and coordinated for several years prior to the birth of the SPB. The effort culminated in March 1997 when the current adjudicative guidelines were approved by the President. She further opined that there is a joint adjudication training course under development by the Adjudicators Training Working Group. The objective is to have in final product one adjudicator's course by December 1998.

8. Ms. Wright then indicated the DCII is now on line and available at ninety DOD locations and twelve non-DOD locations. The DCII-SII connection is currently partially operational with the DSS to OPM link functional but the OPM to DSS link is in the de-bug stage. DCII contains data on five million clearances while SII will contain about two hundred and fifty thousand -- when all clearances are entered. There is also a SAP database under development which will be classified. The Board asked for a clarification re: the policy for access to the newly combined database. Ms Wright stated that read only access requires a SECRET while an SSBI is required for read and write access. Some agencies are reluctant to provide their clearance data for the DCII/SII merger as certain compartmentation requirements are thought to be necessary. Ms. Wright summarized by stating much progress has been made on the implementation of reciprocity but much work lies ahead.

9. Ms. Kathy Nolan of Science Applications stated that DSS researches clearance matters beforehand and freely accepts clearances as appropriate. She encouraged other agencies to do likewise.

The Board fails to see the necessity of requiring the completion of an SF 86 prior to the search of security databases. In many cases the existing clearance is located in the course of the subsequent search and the completion of the SF 86 is therefore redundant and/or superfluous. They strongly recommend that a practice be adopted whereby the security /administrative officer is required to search databases and security records before contacting the investigative subject. This practice should determine the current status of the subject's clearance and minimize duplicative efforts.

The Board welcomes the efforts of the entire community in implementing reciprocity and encourages them to press onward.

10. Mr. Dan Jacobson, Director, Security Policy Board Staff, then addressed the group on the key issues confronting the policy community today. One area that demands attention is the compilation of threat data. The National Intelligence Council has indicated this is a priority matter. The Board noted that the Joint Security Commission recommended threat data be collected in one central point for "one stop shopping." Mr. Jacobson replied that, unfortunately, this did not occur and this issue must remain a priority. The issue of Sensitive but Unclassified data dealing with the national infrastructure is also a priority for today and tomorrow. At the core of this question rests the government's ability to protect the information -- particularly in the face of the Freedom of Information Act. Mr. Jacobson frankly posited that the government is not in an ideal position to protect this data and is consequently handicapped in the matter. The President's Commission on Critical infrastructure is the lead entity for this endeavor. He also noted that the Extranet for Security initiative is moving forward but is in need of funding. This effort promises to enhance the productivity of the average security officer by establishing a secure, electronic channel of communication among security professionals. As previously indicated, common training, particularly in the adjudicative arena, is a priority matter. A research and development proposal has been tendered with emphasis on the insider threat. This too awaits funding but Mr. Jacobson noted that funding after the structure is completed is always more expensive than implanting security after the fact.

11. Mr. Jacobson asserted that the SPB needs to be proactive and any participation from the top down is welcome. He stated the National Security Telecommunications and Information Security Committee (NSSTC) effort is a thorny one and needs much industry support. The rapid pace of technological advance makes this task considerably complex and may promise to be resource intensive.

12. As aforementioned, funding is being aggressively pursued. Several initiatives are currently under fiscal review by community experts and it is fervently hoped that resources can be located to implement endeavors such as Personnel Security Research and the ESP -- to name a few.

13. Dr. Joseph Holthaus, SPBS, then addressed the group on the status of Personnel Security research. Dr. Hoithaus indicated the Personnel Security Research Sub Committee functions under the auspices of the Personnel Security Committee and is staffed by professional researchers. The primary function of the sub committee is to review and validate existing and proposed research projects. Within the past year, the sub committee met to review the various studies regarding the neighborhood coverage of the background investigation. The feedback of the sub committee was provided to the policy community which then made a policy pronouncement. The sub committee has established a research database which maintains unclassified abstracts of personnel security research material completed by government sources. During the past year, the sub committee has met periodically to construct a personnel security research plan which outlines research priorities for the next five years. That document has been reviewed and approved by the Personnel Security Committee and forwarded to elements of DOD and CMS for fiscal analysis. Upon completion of that analysis, the plan will move forward to the Policy Integration Committee, the Security Policy Forum and eventually the Security Policy Board.

14. The Board queried Doctor Hothaus as to the results of the neighborhood study. He indicated that in the final tally all agencies, save one, voted to retain neighborhood coverage dating back three years. The Board also asked which source in the background investigation produced the greatest amount of noteworthy information. According to current data, subject interviews provide noteworthy information in 21% of cases.

15. Mr. Terry Thompson, SPBS, then began a discussion on the current status of the financial disclosure issue. At this time two options are under consideration. The first is the financial disclosure form consisting of seventy four data points and currently used by a single agency. The second possibility, Option B, is a four question addendum to the SF 86 which queries the filer as to assets, liabilities and income. The form gathers more data and the requested information is quite specific while Option B requests totals of assets, liabilities and income but not a listing of specifics. The latter also includes expanded use of financial databases, additional training for adjudicators and investigators and additional questions to be asked of a source and/or a subject during the course of the investigation. It is speculated that use of the form will probably provide more data and that information may have utility from an investigative standpoint. Conversely, the form is considered highly invasive and the utility of the derived information is not necessarily held to be self evident. The Board then queried whether the experimental use of the form has yet yielded any hard data. No qualitative information is yet available but the design of the program is such that significant yields may occur only over a period of years.

16. A participant indicated that industry sentiment favored providing whatever fmancial data was eventually gathered directly to the governrnent rather than to a company security officer.

17. Another participant stated that industry is particularly sensitive about salary information and treats it in a highly proprietary fashion.

18. Several participants expressed concern about the confidentiality of the data collected.

The Board does not believe a case can be made for a separate financial disclosure form. The form is highly invasive and the information gathered of questionable investigative or screening utility. Certainly there has not yet been a convincing demonstration of the usefulness of the data. The Board endorses Option B.

19. There was no further commentary and the meeting was closed by Mr. Thompson at 1115 hours.

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