A reader sent this today. It is sad that things keep sliding downhill. Is no one in authority still left uncorrupted? Things that were fixable problems in decades past have been allowed to run downhill at a rapid rate by those that do not wish real security or government oversight to function at all. If you still care and have some personal knowledge of this mess, please by all means contact your elected politicians before they hold their hearing. GFS

G Florence:

So the Senate is going to examine the security clearance process.  And it sounds like people want to blame the Office of Personnel Management for everything that is wrong.  Seems like I remember the Defense Investigative Service, now the Defense Security Service, had this mission from the early 1970’s until just recently.  I also remember continuous problems with the security clearance process while it was under the Defense Security Service. 

So do you think that the Senate will ask the first hard question?  If the Office of Personnel Management has really taken over the personnel clearance mission, then why has the Defense Security Service halted a majority of the periodic reinvestigations for Top Secret personnel clearances?  The Defense Security Service is claiming budget issues.  Are personnel clearance budget dollars still being funneled through the Defense Security Service?  And if so, why? The Defense Security Service can’t manage their own internal budget.  Why would anyone trust them with the budget of another agency’s mission? 

If you remember, the Defense Security Service spent an average of $1 million or more dollars each year for the past five or more years on their internal All Hands junket meetings in many places to include Atlantic City, Las Vegas and Orlando.  This after the Secretary of Defense directed all Department of Defense agencies, by DoD Directive, not to hold such meetings.  The Director of the Defense Security Service ignored the Secretary of Defense’s directive, and called the junkets “trainings.”

The Old Navy Man

The Washington Post: Senate hearing will examine security clearance in wake of NSA leaks

By Josh Hicks, Published: June 19, 2013 at 6:00 am

A Senate panel on Thursday will examine federal security-clearance processes, continuing a brief round of hearings this week in response to contractor Edward Snowden leaking information about the nation’s sweeping electronic-surveillance program. The Senate subcommittee that deals with contracting and federal workforce will raise questions about a perceived lack of oversight, limited IT capabilities and insufficient information sharing between government agencies, according to an announcement from the group. A report from the national intelligence director showed that about 1 million contractors and more than 3.5 million federal government employees including military personnel hold security clearances. A recent article from Federal Diary columnist Joe Davidson explored the issue of whether contractors should do national security work. The Defense Department handled security clearance processes until 2005, when the Office of Personnel Management’s investigative services division took over the responsibility. Since then, OPM has implemented several changes to decrease clearance-request backlogs and improve the quality of its reviews, according to the subcommittee’s announcement. The hearing on Thursday will feature testimony from OPM’s inspector general and an associate director of investigations for the agency, as well as from the head of the Defense Department’s defense security service, among other officials. Senior government officials also testified Tuesday, saying the government’s electronic surveillance program has thwarted more than 50 terrorist plots in the U.S., according to a Washington Post article about the hearing.