Skip to main content

tv   Security Clearances  CSPAN  March 8, 2018 4:06am-7:01am EST

4:06 am
>> our podcast, c-span's weekly takes us beyond the headlines to explain significant new story that is shaping the conversation in washington and around the country. you'll hear from journalists, policymakers and experts providing background. find the weekly on the free c-span radio app, as well as itunes, stitcher and google play. online anytime at >> a senate hearing look at security clearances for contractors with the name to streamline the process. witnesses talked about the need for security clearances. senator richard burr is the head of the intelligence committee, and this is just under three hours.
4:07 am
sen. burr: i would like to thank our witnesses for appearing today to discuss our government security clearance process and areas of reform. clearance process and reform. personnel with our nation's most sensitive projects and most important secrets, ensuring a modern, clear and
4:08 am
efficient security process is paramount to maintaining national security. industrypeak with representatives on the process and how it affects their ability to support u.s. government. our first panel includes mr. kevin phillips, miss jane ch and mr.of raytheon, berteau, and miss brenda, the government accountability office. thank you and thank you for the thousands of employees you represent who work every day to support the whole of u.s. government. nation's most sensitive programs and operations would not be possible without your work. i look forward to how your respective companies review the
4:09 am
prospective security process and affects operations, hiring, and repetitiveness. -- and competitiveness. i would also like to look at ideas of reform. our second panel includes members of the executive branch. of nationalnbar, intelligence and security center, mr. gary reed, director of security intelligence -- and mr. dan payne, at the department of defense. bill provided the government's perspective on this issue and update on their efforts to improve -- they will provide the government's perspective on this issue and update efforts. the point of this security is to grant clearance to top-level personnel and consider better
4:10 am
ways forward. the government's method of issuing nationals 30 clearance is virtually unchanged since -- national security clearance is virtually unchanged since 1947. in missing result information to report threats or workplace violence. we should consider technologies that increase efficiency as technology while providing greater real-time situational awareness of threats to sensitive information. wherebyore, reciprocity clearance granted by one agency is also recognized by another simply does not work. clearancehat the process should be commanding on candidates, uncover potential issues before one is granted
4:11 am
access to sensitive information. clearly the current system is not optimally must do better. -- is not optimal and we must do better. i am hopeful that we can find action to reform the process. i want to thank each of the witnesses were your testimony today. i will turn to the vice-chairman for comments he may have. sen. warner: thank you mr. chairman and i want to thank you for holding this hearing in an unclassified setting. i believe the way our government protects our secrets is a critical area of oversight for this committee. in many ways, the system in 1947, when in classified cables were sent by typewriter, has not changed very much. clearance process
4:12 am
today is a manual level process. methods that will be familiar to fans of the spy films. risk was that someone would share pages from classified reports with identifiable foreign adversaries. today we worry about insider threats. someone who can remove in internal hard drive and provide s ofs -- provide petabyte data. industry is a much larger partner. workers are highly mobile across careers, sectors, and locations. technology such as ai can help assess trustworthiness in a more efficient and dynamic way.
4:13 am
but we are not taken advantage of these advances. just last month at an open hearing, the director of national intelligence said that the security clearance process is, in his words, broken and needs to be reformed. the gaory of this year, placed the security clearance process on the highest of his list, that needs broad-based transformation and reform. clear, and there investigation inventory has more than doubled in the last three years. 700,000 people are currently waiting on background check. despite recent headlines, the overwhelming majority of those waiting do not have unusually complex backgrounds or finances. nevertheless, the cost to run a background check has nearly doubled.
4:14 am
timelines are far in excess of the standard law. individuals, companies, government agencies, and our military's readiness. in commonwealth virginia, i hear from contractors that cutting-edge technology companies and government agencies saying they cannot hire people they need in a timely manner. months,f people taking even a year, to start jobs they were hired for. i have heard of folks having to take other jobs because the process took too long and they could not afford to wait. to compete globally, economically and militarily, the status quo of continued delays and convoluted systems cannot continue. we face threats to our security that we have to address. insider threats like edward
4:15 am
snowden have compromised vast amounts of eta -- of data. these lapses in national security are too big to think that incremental reform will suffice. we need a revolution to our system. and i believe we can assess the trustworthiness of our workforce in a dramatically faster and more effective manner than we do today. we have two great panels here that will speak from the governments perspective and from the private sector. i would like to think you all for appearing. meeting, atour next the office of omb, which chairs the efforts to address clearances and declined to appear today, will appear at the next one -- the next meeting.
4:16 am
want to work with you to devise a dynamicat reflects workforce and embraces the needs of our government and industry partners. thank you mr. chairman, i look forward to this hearing. sen. burr: thank you, vice-chairman. when we have finished receiving testimony, i will recognize members based on seniority for up to five minutes. i understand you will go first and then we will work down from the left to my right. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to be here today to discuss the work on the serious challenge of the personnel security clearance process. we know that this is a high risk area and -- in january 2018 because it represents a
4:17 am
significant management risk. of high quality security clearance process is necessary to minimize the risk of unauthorized exposures to classified information. and to help ensure that information about criminals with -- individual criminal history or other information is identified. we recognize that some of the findings in our reports issued in november and december touch on this topic. i will briefly provide my statement, divided in three parts. first, we find that agencies have made progress but key long-standing initiatives remaining complete. agencies still cap -- still are challenged maintaining aspect then2017 standards and fully implementing a continuous evaluation program.
4:18 am
efforts for this program go back 10 years. we found that while the odmi takes continuous steps, they did not determine what the future stages will continue. also, while agencies are taking steps to establish governmentwide performance measures for the qualities of investigations, the original milestone for completion was missed in fiscal year 2010. no revised milestone has currently been set for completion. establish a the dni milestone for completion of such measures. -- the objective for secret and top-secret clearances, as well as a decrease from fiscal years 2012 through 2016. while 73% of agencies did not meet timely objectives for
4:19 am
clearances for most of fiscal year didn't love, 98% did not 2012, 90% didear not meet these clearances in 2016. -- they are responsible for covering most of the government's background investigations. investigation found an increase from august of of4 to more than 710,000 as february 2018. we found that the bureau it did not have a plan for reducing the backlog. finally we found continuous information on agencies are unknown because the future state of the program and the steps of agency resources have not been determined. agencies have determined increased resources as a risk to the program.
4:20 am
the dod told us that with workload and funding issues, they see no alternative but to replace periodic investigations with continuous evaluations. that more frequent investigations could cost $1.8 billion for fiscal year 2022. however they clarify that continuous evaluation is intended to supplement not replace periodic investigations. key rolesencies have in this multi-phase clearance odniss, including odi, -- and others. there is a council responsible for driving implementation of efforts governmentwide. we look forward to working with them to discuss plans with progress in this high risk area.
4:21 am
now is a time for strong, tough --dership to focus on improve timeliness, and reduce the backlog. failure to do so increases the risk of damaging unauthorized exposures of classified information. mr. chairman, that concludes my remarks. sen. burr: mr. phillips, the floor is yours. is kevin phillips and i'm ceo of mantech international. we support national and homeland security. i appreciate my efforts to produce it in this industry panel and ask that my written statement be entered as part of the hearing record. warren, 15 companies and six associations have worked
4:22 am
collectively over the last six to nine months to increase the visibility and importance of to proposed and solutions for the problem. -- our industry's number one priority. given the increasing challenges we face in providing horrified, clear -- providing qualified, clear talent, it is an all government issue because it impacts every agency we support. the time it takes to obtain clearance has more than doubled. the time it takes to get a top level clearance is over one year. a secret clearance, eight months. top professionals are in high demand across the nation. they do not have to wait over a year to get a job.
4:23 am
increasingly, they are unwilling to deal with the uncertainty associated with this process. as a result of this issue, the key support for weapons developed, cyber security, analytics, maintenance and sustainment, space resilience support, as well as the use of transformational technologies across all government, is being usurped. 2014, we end of estimate more than 2000 positions in the contractor community, in support of the intelligence committee, have gone unfilled because of these issues. allowsable reciprocity, crossover clearances to be done routinely and automatically. today, 23 different agencies provide different processes in order to determine who is trustworthy and suitable to be employed in that agency.
4:24 am
one universally accepted and enforced standard across all government is needed. backlog, the current shows no signs of improvement. to reduce the backlog we have today, while our government partners are working diligently to development -- develop and implement a new system for tomorrow. thirdly, we have to prioritize existing cases. the amounts of backlogs have not gone down the timelines have not improved. we may need to him -- need to prioritize in those backlogs, the cases with the greatest mission impact or pose the greatest risk to national security. adopt we need to continuous -- establish a framework for which government
4:25 am
better securean information about individuals. so that we can better protect the nation against threats from insiders. fifth, from a legislative standpoint, we consider this a whole government issue. accordingly we believe that a concerted focus from congress is required. we support the reinstatement of -- irpa -- the urp timelines. -- we in the industry understand the importance of a strong security process. that said, slow security does not constitute good security. time matters to the mission.
4:26 am
to take theommitted actions needed to hire trustworthy individuals and protect the nation from outside threats. committee'se the leadership and focus on this matter. thank you. burr, members of the committee, i am honored to represent raytheon today before this committee. raytheon and our employees understand and take seriously our obligation to protect the nation's secrets. we submit the same clearance process that our government and military partners do, and we take the steps required to maintain security established and entrusted with us. raytheon'ssident of global intelligence and business unit, i navigate the disruptions that backlogs in the security
4:27 am
clearance process cause on any basis. -- cause on a daily basis. not just for raytheon and our peers but for the war fighters, intelligence officers, and homeland security officials that rely on our products to protect the united states. the associated delays and the backlogs are well documented and the records speak for themselves. but what metrics fail to capture are the real world implications with the backlogs. new careers put on hold, top talent lost, and programs that provide critical war fighter capabilities. the delays also come with a real-world price tag. new hires run-up overhead costs while they wait for clearance, resulting in significant program cost increases.
4:28 am
backlog the current will require immediate and aggressive interim steps, some of which are being addressed. right now we support the government's effort to add resources and periodic requirements for investigations. support efforts to streamline the application process, automate and digitize information collection, and improve related processes. beyond these actions, we recommend eliminating the first in, first out, investigation of our workflow. focusing on immediate resources of high priority clearance and low level investigation. is also critical that congress and the executive branch implement fundamental reform that streamline the process and increase our nations security by
4:29 am
leveraging advances in technology. this effort should be guided by what our industry calls the four ones. the first one is forming a digital record of all investigations, updated continuously and stored securely. investigations which implement continuous evaluations and robust user activity monitoring to facilitate dynamic, ongoing assessments of individual risk while protecting sensitive information on systems. adjudication,is calling for streamlining of systems so that agencies can clear a decision -- agencies that clear a decision is respected by other departments and agencies. this will increase efficiency and promote reciprocity based on
4:30 am
a consistent set of standards for access suitability and standards. the fourth and final one is one clearance, recognized across the entire government and transferable between departments , agencies, and contracts. we believe the implication of these reforms will help eliminate inefficiencies that current system while promoting effective recruitment and retention, and utilization of government employees and contractors. most critically, these reforms will help close security gaps that threaten our nation's security personnel. the modern threat environment can no longer be addressed using outdated and infrequent security snapshots that even the most well intended reporting requirements, working groups, and legislative deadlines, have not and will not overcome the fear of change or the comfort of
4:31 am
the status quo. strong leadership from both congress and the white house will be crucial to the success of these efforts. thank you for the opportunity to be here and i look forward to answering questions. thank you mr. german -- chairman, members of the committee. i would ask that my written statement be incorporated in the record. i will make a few key points. you heard the description of the problems and the process and solutions. for once, the one application, one adjudication and won clearance. thisghlights the fact that is a whole government problem. just look at the panel that you have following us, you do not have a whole of government representation on their, as vice-chairman warner pointed out.
4:32 am
it plays a key role both in the performance accountability council and in the fundamental process across the board. ofthe end, this is a set processes that exercises judgment, and makes a decision of where to place trust. in that decision is a calculus of how much fiscal we are willing to accept. if it is zero, we will never issue a clearance. there is a whole level of dynamics that has to go on. what can this committee and the congress do? it is to keep the whole government requirement in mind. second, within that, there is a funding process. thatf those 23 agencies have separate parties here have to provide funding to somebody who is going to do the work. typically today that is the national background investigation bureau. wecannot find, from where sit outside, a record of where it stands for those 23 agencies because it is across all the appropriation accounts.
4:33 am
that is no longer available to us. it may be available to you, it should be available to you. i think it is important as we look at the funding bill, that we will see into this week and next week, make sure the funding is in there because the systems will not operate without adequate resources. there has to be substantial process improvement. my fellow panelists have talked about that. in the meantime, you have a requirement for part of this responsibility to be moved from the national background investigation bureau, or -- over to the defense department. while that movement is taking place, and the plan is, it will take years, the system has to keep going as well. there has to be funding for the ongoing work, and funding for the new capabilities inside the defense department. that makes it all the more important. my fellow panelists have mentioned reciprocity.
4:34 am
this is a critical issue. how can it be that you are cleared and acceptable for one part of the government at a certain level and you are not cleared on another part? the record shows 23 different agencies. in those agencies there are subcategories. dhs alone has more than a dozen separate reciprocity determiners who can say you may be good enough for those guys but you are not good enough for me and they do not have to tell us why, which makes it hard for us to figure out how to get out of it. you have already heard some of that. we know there is an impact on the government as well. somewhere in the government something is not being done as well at his -- as it ought to be or as fast. we do not have that information out of the government, but you have to believe that somewhere it will have an impact. this is not just contractors, this is government civilian personnel, new recruits, all of those have had ethics as well. is,single biggest thing
4:35 am
access to information about what is going on, what the results are, you have a situation now where it used to be information was made available to the public that we can rely on to prioritize our own resources. that is no longer there. we need you to help make that information not only visible to you in the committee. it might come to you and af ou oh status, the visible to the status -- to the public and those have to operate to support the government. i conclude my remarks in turn back to you. chairman: we will go by seniority for up to five minutes. simple.ion is very it is this. let's make an assumption that funding is not an issue. ?hy does it take so -- long give me the three things that
4:36 am
make this process be so long. mr. phillips. ? sir, we have a number of agencies who have their own processes set up and they have to go to those processes. it was meant to be for the -- during the administration. through noteso rather than tablets. they have to go to the mail to send a request to get an education check. they physically have to visit a , or other access points to get things done. today, technology allows for a rapid way of getting decisions done without changing the trustworthiness of the individual. done greatly and significantly. the second part is that, people
4:37 am
want to walk through the process and make sure, in this environment, that people are trustworthy. the timeline is taking longer because the assurance is needed. it is impacting the mission. we want to make sure time is factored into the decisions, or we will not be able to defend the digital logs from outside traffic. i think it is the process and the need to have a risk based review and the need to protect from the inside. i would echo his comments but i would say it different. we are a nation blessed with very high technology. we are just not using that technology in this process. we talked about people having to physically go and meet people. while that gives us some level of assurance, i think the continuing evaluation give his
4:38 am
-- gives us a whole level of assurance. we should use that technology to give us more confidence in the results, as well as decrease the timelines. basically, what you have told me as i put more effort into understanding who my interns are then potentially the process for security clearances. you go to the areas that u.n. the most about them, social media is at the top of the list, i cannot envision anybody coming into the office that you have not thoroughly checked out everything they have set online, which is a protected space to them. we know it is a public space. what you have done is confirmed our biggest fear is that we are so obsessed with littleing, and very consumption of outcome. that is how you get a backlog. you can let that continue to be nobody's outraged.
4:39 am
what is the single change that you would make to the security clearance process if you only limited to one? i think prompt action. this needs to be, as some of the colleagues here have said, a high priority. we keep hearing the words top leadership. there was top leadership involvement when the dod program was on a high risk in 2005 and 2007. we saw that top leadership ,riving efforts from omb, dod that is what we are going to be looking for as we measure their progress going forward to take actions to come off of the high risk list. top leaders engaging with congress to show that reducing the backlog is a top priority, as well as taking action to communicate that to the other
4:40 am
members and personnel of the security clearance community, as well as my colleagues on the panel. leadership is desperately needed in this area. immediately is funding. long-term is one uniform standard and reciprocity. it is a big deal. would say continuous evaluation monitoring. doing that on a continuous bait time allows people to spend more time reducing the current backlog. do i get to use the three they have used in at a fourth one. i do think reciprocity is the top priority in that process. using technology, not just continuous evaluation, but in the investigations process. i have had experience for nearly 40 years in a guy still shows up with a pencil and a piece of
4:41 am
paper and make sure that the questions i have entered into the form, which are the same answers i have given from was 40 years are still at i believe. he writes it down with a pencil and puts it into a computer system. it is not compatible with anybody else's computer system. let's use 21st century technology. chairman: my thanks to all of you for your candid responses. i say that with the full knowledge of knowing that this issue is a multi-committee jurisdictional issue on the hill. we have just as much to fix up here. some of the things that you have expressed is the results of no coordination legislatively. i think we will take that to heart as we move forward. think the panel -- i think the panel for their accurate description. them putting this up. are we wasting taxpayer
4:42 am
dollars by hiring individuals that cannot do the work they are hired to do. or as the industry panel indicated, not take a job because of the clearance process. i think we lose on the government side where people would come in and serve lower saddle -- lower salary on the industry side because of security clearance. i really appreciate your comments about the use of technology. if you could give other specific how on a technology basis we can improve this has not been updated since the 1950's. specific technology examples. entities that are involved in the front end, the scheduling process, investigation process, and the
4:43 am
adjudication process have all identified a number of places were they can bring that technology to bear. the greatest advantage we can take us to have integrated data across the government so we have access to everything everywhere. the intelligence community has made more progress here than much of the rest of the government has had, but they also had the advantage of scale. this scale was smaller. they need the motivation to do that. we can give you a list of specific that you can consider as you go forward as well. >> i would say, going back to my previous answer, continuous evaluation. a lot of this data that we go personally ask these people, that are the same questions we have asked for 40 years, a lot anthat data is available -- open source, it is a matter of public record. >> rather than someone send a letter to a personal education institution.
4:44 am
can you put it down for secret clearance level? you go down through and look for bankruptcy, if someone files for bankruptcy, that is a matter of public record. for example, we can get that through just trolling the web. without an agent having to physically travel and go take that information down with pencil and paper. for example. examples give you two and one desired solution. one of my fellow ceos has a contract where he has people in the green zone doing dod work and they cannot support, in that same limited space, work for another department because they have to go through a process to get a clearance. they across the street can't go in and support with the confined environment for two agencies to do the same thing in a difficult environment.
4:45 am
we have a separate ceo who has a contract that does work the information close to both dod and somewhere in dhs. tot individual has to fill applications and go through to investigations to do the same job. industry, quite often utilizes public systems that we share that are cloud-based, multi-letter security, and we pay for it ourselves. it is a uniformed set of systems that are available. i think establishing a uniform system that every agency who has funding can go into and do its would be very beneficial. then those accesses would be available at the same security level for people to know what is happening and reciprocity can happen just like that. reciprocity and
4:46 am
portability. why is one of the reasons this is so high on his priority. he lived this experience having sat on the committee for a number of years. having access to all types of information. the amount of -- when he left the senate and a few weeks later when he was og an icon because there was the short term cap, he had to go through a new security clearance process, which was pretty absurd. one of the things i would like you to comment on, or what i have heard constantly. everybody knows this is a problem, but this, like much of gna in terms of operations it's pushed to the back of the line. had we make sure that we as congress, with the appropriate oversight, make sure that agencies do not take their security clearance budget and push it to the back of the line? this is an issue and a problem, but these are dollars that don't
4:47 am
ever seem to be prioritized because they are not sold commission. >> this is something that goes back to the top leadership from the deputy director for management at omb, who is the chair of the council that is drafting the reform efforts and overseeing them. this is to send a message that this is a top priority whether reducing the backlog or fully implementing this. resources will be provided and the agencies will follow suit. if i may comment on the .echnology the continued evaluation is an area that you have heard has great promise. it could help streamline the process, perhaps be more efficient. the efforts to implement continues evaluation goes back to 2008 with full implementation expected in 2010. that has not happened. encouraged by the recent directive expanding on what ce
4:48 am
is. we still do not really know what continuous evaluation is going to comprise, and when it will be implemented. i think that will be a huge step for the dni to develop a detailed implementation plan of when the phases are going to occur, and the agency's expectations to implement that. >> i would simply say that i her comments are pretty clear. we have to start at the top. i am disappointed, and i know you are as well that omb did not take our invitation to participate. i think we need to get them back in at some point. our private of witnesses today have been understandably very critical of in thecceptable flaws government's clearance process, and the lack of a system of continuous evaluation in
4:49 am
evaluation. in adequate funding has been mentioned. i want to turn the question around. three widelyn reported serious breaches at the nsa. edl three involved contract employees. it is evidence relying solely on of ment of time snapshot an applicant security profile to determine securing our inflammation of facilities. i have been a strong supporter of moving to continuous evaluations, particularly following the navy yard shooting. my question for each of the three of you is, what
4:50 am
responsibility do contractors have to identify and report behaviorn employee that may indicate a vulnerability, and should trigger a review of the security clearance? at least one of the widely nsarted instances involving , the employees who worked there are very aware of the issues that should have triggered a review of his clearance. the role that government has, and that we need to do much better, but what is in light, particularly of those three serious breaches all involving contract employees? are critical questions.
4:51 am
i would make three points. i know you know this, the process is the same whether you are a government uniformed personnel or a government civilian or contractor in terms of investigation. >> i do know that. >> i think that the issues we have been talking about today, some of the process actually incorporate a number of lesson learns from those examples you cite here. continuous evaluation being the key piece here. i think a number of the proposals, some of which are already being implemented, although, since we don't get visit -- visible insight, we don't know how for that implementation is. i think there is a third piece. the examples that you cite, you are right. from the company's point of view, these are people working inside a government facility, and we frequently do not get the -- or ourn about
4:52 am
companies do not get the information that the government employees have. there has to be greater cooperation and cooperation -- collaboration and cooperation. this is where personnel issues, privacy issues, security issues and contact issues come together. we have to design it that way, up front. we know how to do it, we just do not do it every time. is their responsibility? have a responsibility to train our employees. through an employee training. series that is mandated across all of our employees. in some cases where we have employees place it at government facilities, a take a second round of training that is required by the government customer as well. the second thing we do is what we call a user activity
4:53 am
monitoring. when you log on to a system, you are -- it is very clear to you, it says right there on the screen that your activity is being monitored while you are on those systems. we have a process where we use type of capabilities to look at what people are doing on the systems to monitor their behavior. there are looking for things that are outside their normal pattern, or their normal work. that data is provided to our security operation center. if it triggers an alert we go through an investigation process. if someone comes through and says there is something going on with an employee, we trigger an investigation. quickly, if man tech -- if they have a group of employees working for the
4:54 am
government on highly sensitive information, and many of the employees of that group think that one of the employees has , developed arails drug problem, or finance problems, what specifically happens? have an insider program that identifies high-risk employees. whether the individuals hold the position of trust, if we see a , itvior we need to track rolls into a process that goes throughout her senior security executive, coordinated with human resources and a legal department and overseen by myself with updates every quarter to make sure we are tracking those individuals. we report that information to the government, we also start monitoring their overall behavior to make sure that that individual's behavior does not provide additional risk of harm to our employees are federal employees. or increase the position of
4:55 am
data to thereach of government. additionally, we spot check people coming out. we want to make sure that as a partner weird doing everything we can. the only thing we have to share information about individuals to hold public of trust. i would like to follow up on senator collins questions to you mr. phillips. what changes have been made by your company in the wake of snowden and martin? >> since then we have increased our insider threat process. >> from what to what? if you can be specific. >> all of government is moving industryandating partnering in this process. what we are doing is making sure
4:56 am
-- we go toehavior our program managers and we tell them that if you see a behavior, we need to know. >> where did you miss with snowden? >> we do not have that event within our framework or at the snowden component, or something like that specifically is the employee is on a federal facility in the company cannot access the government stated to see the behaviors. they have to be visually seen by the people around the individual. we need -- point't that an important right there? these are big events. it is very hard for us to know the background, and how it happened. could you go into that in a little more detail? anything that is on a secured government network, or secured
4:57 am
government facility is controlled by the government regardless of whether it is military, federal employee or contractor. the information flow around that is fairly limited for security reasons, but also personal reasons. the program we think is best long-term, while lining public trust, with appropriate protections of privacy. if they are on a network having classified information, had we better track the behaviors and individual so that we as a contract community can take the appropriate actions on that. >> both of these employees were contract employees with an essay -- nsa. how closely have you reviewed the procedures, and have you made any recommendations to nsa? the agency has gone through significant review, and we as a
4:58 am
contract are meeting their standards to be responsive to the risk that they may have seen within the review. maybe somebody can add to that because that is a very general statement and it does not leave me with any answer. if i could add a little bit to that, not necessarily the snowden case or the marching case, but we see time and again the situation where the government will tell a contractor, this person is no longer suitable, take them off the contract, but they will not tell us why are what behavior has occurred, or what has motivated them to do that. we are left trying to figure out what happened here. >> how often does that happen? >> i hear about it more than once a year. i probably don't hear about it a
4:59 am
lot of the times that it does happen. , and maybedividuals the company releases the individual, but the individual can go somewhere else. that shouldsharing occur between the government and the contractors involved, cutting across the security domain, and the personnel and human resources domain has got to be improved. because of the 4,080,000 national security clearances, the contractors hold almost 1,921,000 of those. that is a big constituency out there. because it involves the defense companies of which this is a california company, that i am very proud of. it seems to me that the private sector to has an increased responsibility too.
5:00 am
that? you view how does the company specifically view in increased responsibility? we have stepped up our training requirements around this area. to what hasvity happened in making people aware. when he on our own network, we have control on what we monitor and where we see risks and how we escalate and how we do that. i think he is very correct in needs to be better partnership when our employees sit on government facilities and use government network. there needs to be more information sharing on what we can do jointly. we don't have the ability to monitor those networks. i think any insight is most sure weto us in making
5:01 am
adjudicator our workforce. amon pages seven and eight i looking through your written remarks. you make some good recommendations. could you go into them for us, please? in the rain, let me find it. -- in the written, let me find it. just one second, please. mr. chairman, i am sorry. my hand slipped and i lost the help me. >> i think that was around the one application. >> that's right, the fundamental reform.
5:02 am
with a clearance background of 300,000. the one application and it runs through. this is more than a decade. as you point out, since they were first proposed. to make immediate progress you say the company encourages the government to priorities and set incremental milestones for implementing governmentwide reciprocity continuous evaluation, and information technology reforms. can you be more specific about that ? >> on the one application, that is the one standardized, one digitized and what is available can be shared across organizations. you do not have to shared -- fill that out more than once. surenvestigation to make whether it is a dod investigation, in air force, army or cia investigation, that is the same investigation that
5:03 am
has the same standards and same views on risks. those can be shared across the different agencies. one of adjudication of that, instead of having different adjudications, you have one set of adjudication processes, one set of risks that that adjudication is based on, so that clearance can be agreed to and can be recognized across the different agencies. clearly, just the one clearance to make sure that that reciprocity moves across organizations. i think they are pretty fundamental, pretty standard, pretty simple processes. one application, one clearance process, one adjudication recognized by all. >> do think that would make a difference with the 4 million? >> i think it would make a huge difference.
5:04 am
streamline the original investigation, you are not re-investigating the same people over and over, and the resources required to do their real investigations would be focused on the backlog. if you would indulge me for one added point. senator feinstein's line of questions is critical. one thing that is important to put on the record. are very limited in their ability to get information out of the thernment of the status of investigation and adjudication going on with the people they have submitted into the process. phillips or jane chapelle calls the government agency, what they will likely be told is, we cannot tell you anything. go talk to your contracting officer representative, who then has to go through a process internally. not the speediest of processes. he may or may not get you an answer back. we see cases were a decision has been made and not communicating
5:05 am
for the company in more than six months. there is a lot that has to be done in terms of improving communication. the oversight role and encouraging that will be for a helpful. willing to write something up as to what both of you, or three of you think would be the specifics and send it to the chairman? >> absolutely. in your testimony you talk about the 12 recommendations you made to that national intelligence. how me of those today except. >> we do not know if they are
5:06 am
going to take action on those recommendations are not. i must've read your testimony wrong. i got the impression they had confirmed with some but not all. >> they did concur with some. >> what does that mean they concurred but did not accept them? i am trying to figure that out. >> they concurred, for example, with taking steps to develop a continuous evaluation policy, and implementations, but on other actions they disagreed. they thought they already had things in play and that no more action was necessary. which of the 12 things you recommended do you think would have the most impact on achieving the goal we want to achieve here? it wouldday, i think be the implementation plan for continuous evaluation. i also have to note that there
5:07 am
has been a lot discussion about reciprocity. reciprocity a statutorily required for the prevention act of 2004. by that act, agencies are investigationsor that are authorized by the provider, as well as adjudications. there is always certain exceptions. there reciprocity is in statute, it just has not had guidance so we can be implemented. >> and continuous evaluation, hot is that relate to -- you are that continued a valuation using open source data, or data that has already been collected or going through that process again. you want to talk about that more? >> we are saying that instead of day onefor them -- from
5:08 am
when you are given your clearance and having no investigations between that period, been doing your investigation, all through that time, the continuously monitored data to see if there is any adverse data can -- data concerning that person. high-risk and of dini you need to pay more attention to that person sooner rather than wait the normal five to six years for that background investigation. person -- when someone has moved onto another job and has come back, do they have to go through the whole clearance process again?
5:09 am
they have to resubmit again everywhere they have ever lived? don't we have all that somewhere if they have been cleared once? >> yes, sir. >> i have lived in the same house for the last 29 years and the same neighbors for the last 29 years. both are former government suitability,h determination and clearances. every time i fill that form out it is the exact same information as it was the time before and the time before that. in the databases, they just make me do it again. >> does anybody have a reason why to do this again if the government already has this? .> there is an old saying in almost every case, these elements of the process that are built in here was a fix to a previous problem. what we have never done is the type of end to end analysis of
5:10 am
how do we design a process. what you hear from the panel is that some of the investigations that are underway and the dod is developing a plan for, what to give antigen opportunity. it will take a long time and we would like to see it speed up. small companies are treated differently when it comes to getting their employees cleared? >> they go through the same process. if the company has substantial amount of work in the government, they may be able to make a job offer to a new employee and say we have something we can have you do while you are waiting the year or two to get the clearance process. a is very much harder for smaller person who does not have the business base of the overall capacity to do that. you make a contingency offer. a critical skill, would say it is a cyber security expert just out of college. you're asking them to put their
5:11 am
career on hold for an indefinite amount of time. don't get paid and maybe we will get a clearance at some point in time and hire you. one, a will reduce the number of people who will do that, secondly, they will lose their technical edge because the system is moving on while they are not working in it. it has a double impact. when i mentioned the importance of balancing risk, there is a risk we do not take into account. it is not just the risk of awarding a clearance to somebody who ends up doing something wrong. there is a risk to government missions and functions in every step of the way by not doing it in a timely way and not having the best and brightest people on board to do that. nobody documents that. it has been a good panel. i just want to ask one question to the panel. it seems to me that one of the
5:12 am
central issues here is, there is --ulture for over secrecy where over secrecy is actually valued. fore is no accountability excessive secrecy. we end up with 4 million people with security clearances. i have heard my colleagues talk about the backlog question. i know that is very important to our companies, but i think to really get out the gut of this this, we have to deal with secrecy question. i would like to ask you, what in your view is the government doing that is most helpful in that 4 millionng number, which i thinks -- think reflects that there are too many secrets out there and to me people are sitting on them.
5:13 am
what is the government doing about that? we have, in the past, recommended that the o'dea and its components, services as well as agencies, evaluate the positions that require clearances, to make sure clearances are required in the first place. then have procedures in place where they periodically reevaluate those positions to see if those clearances are still necessary. that would be a way to make sure that the requirement is correct. most people think that clearances follow people. clearances do not follow them, they follow the position. >> i know of your recommendation. i am curious as to whether you think the government is moving expeditiously on actually doing something about it?
5:14 am
strikes me, this excessive number of security clearances, and your recommendations always have these efforts to reduce. this has been the longest running battle since the trojan war. ithink senator feinstein and are the longest-serving members. i have heard this again and again. what is the government doing that is actually effective? not your recommendations, which i think are good, but what is the government doing that is effective in terms of reducing the number? >> the answer is not enough. if they were doing enough in terms of leadership and prompt action, they would not have the backlog they have or the number of people you are calling into question. >> i will submit some questions to you in writing. look forward to the second round. hack of opium by
5:15 am
hostile foreign power, countless americans have had their privacy violated with information obtained by that foreign power. of you have any observations or comments about ed that sort of lack of security for that sensitive information? what sort of impact that has had on the best and brightest people we would like to serve in these important positions? >> i will start with that because my personal information was some of the information that was leaked. not only my information, but the people i had done as references, my family members, their information was also compromise. think it is incredibly important that this data is secured and that it goes through the same cyber process that the
5:16 am
programs that we support do. you are saying how you have to fill out the same information on repetitive applications for security clearances. guess we know that foreign nations of the information, but the u.s. government does not keep it in a place were they can use it without having to ask you each time. it is my understanding that a number of steps have been taken inside the office of personnel management to provide greater security. that is a question for the second panel on the status of those steps. we also have to recognize that we will never be 100% secure on being able to do that. i think we have to mitigate against that as well. it is notso note that just the central databases that come into play. it is all the individual things
5:17 am
inside each of the agencies. a situationbly in where we are going to have to be able to recognize a mitigate that is rapidly as possible. i am probably a little less concerned about that particular -- although, i got a letter, my wife got a letter and my kids did as well. i had a responsibility inside the dod to oversee the mailing of those 22 million letters. we mailed out one million a week and it took the better part of a half of the year to notify everybody. i know that mailing occurred a year and a half after the breach. we need to let people know in a more timely way that their data has been compromised. >> i don't know anything about that episode that we can be proud of. it seems to me a bit embarrassing. obviously people are at risk as a result. ask about interim clearances. the role of interim clearances.
5:18 am
what idol understand is how can somebody have a sufficient interimnd to get in clearance and what limitations were put on that clearance that would not apply to a complete clearance so to speak? how does that actually work in practice? role of interim clearances that are conducted to approve of those? they are entering their 50th year this year. interimhad had clearance is part of moving people into supporting the federal government. as you know, the interim clearance process is a decision that is a government decision. it is not something we as contractors can decide, we have to inform the government. company,ot seen, as a
5:19 am
issues with the process of how we do it. that said, one of the issues is because of the time it takes to get a security clearance, that interim security is longer than it was three years ago. it mirrors the process itself. the background investigation that is commercial is done on the individual from a company standpoint. the forms are reviewed in total to make sure that all information is available. in our history, less than one person per year has been
5:20 am
identified in that sequence is not being supportable to doing security work in the future. >> i want to follow up a little the good questions for my colleague from texas. industry,of you in scioften have you seen a ts in our clearance? is that a common thing? >> for our industry it is not uncommon, but seeing 100 50 people in interim status, a vast -- cannotf them are compare them to any other requirement. those who are in interim secret status have received a clearance. it is fairly narrow. for my personal knowledge, i
5:21 am
don't know of interim clearances on those type of clearances. those are you know we finalize from an interim clearance. frankly, with the backlog of clearances that we have right i think the risk of not doing that, and not being able to perform the mission is very high. in my experience, i don't know if there is data collected on this, but in my experience it was more common in the past and is a lot less common today and has been less common over the years. examples forthose good reason. does the government track how many interim security clearances are issued by type, by agency, ?y personnel type
5:22 am
and is very process in place to make sure that when that haserate access period expired, there is a review to say, red flag, this is come to an end, we should look at this person again? might the atmation the agency level. and their case management systems. it was not the levels we looked at in our reviews will we worked with od and i to collect data -- ni to collect data for specific agencies. >> all the agencies are not here right now, but that is something we should pay attention to? >> yes. >> for any of you who want to offer your advice on this. it seems to me from previous it sounds like continuous evaluation is really important, but it should not supplant a periodic
5:23 am
review, it should supplement a periodic review. is that your view across the board? any of you who want to offer your advice i would be curious. >> technology allows for continuous evaluation. 10 years ago you could not do it. it is a very good thing to utilize. over time it will become more and more important because it -- it can become dependent on. we consider it a use of technology to the use of benefit of technology. within that framework, depending on the level of trust on the process itself, periodic investigation presented its -- investigation percentages can come down. period gete interim
5:24 am
longer based on the rate? >> it could be sampled periodic investigations to make sure the process is working. >> i would say it's slightly different. i would say it focuses where the high risk is, and where you should focus periodic investigations on. to ask you one more question before i run out of time. nationalfied that background investigation bureau was trying to decrease the backlog that has huge challenges. one thing that seems to be working is that it is taking and applying investigative personnel to specific sites for a with a set ofod shops and workspace and try to crank through time sensitive clearance investigations without the back-and-forth we heard about and some of the testimonies.
5:25 am
the inefficiencies, this is happening right now at a couple of labs in new mexico. it seems like a rare good news story of increasing efficiency. do you agree with that and is is the motto we should be applying? should beel we applying? the reviewfound in is that the model did not have the capacity to carry out responsibilities to reduce the backlog. the bureau looked at for scenarios of different workforces to try to tackle this backlog. that if things stay the same, very aggressive hiring of contractors. feasibleded it was not for the plant where they would put so much interest is on a contractors and the two plans that they did look at, the backlog would not be reduced for several years. there has not been a selection of which plan they are going to go with in order to reduce the backlog.
5:26 am
that will be key. you cannot reduce the backlog if you do not have the workforce. you, in't disagree with don't pick you answered my question. my time is over so we will have to move along. first i want to congratulate you because you made the key point of the whole hearing. the opportunity cost is what we should be talking about. that is what brings me here today because i know too many stories of people who just gave , who spoke arabic, who visited the middle east and lived there and the cousins that could not get their clans. it was a catch 22 and those are the people we want. that's what we have to focus on, those immeasurable people who lost the opportunity cost that has made this an important inquiry. who is in charge? if john mccain is here he would say who can we fire? this is a pure management problem.
5:27 am
>> this is a management problem. accountabilityhe council because those are the principles that are in charge of implementing the reform efforts. >> who are the people on the council? deputy director for management at omb. the director for national intelligence, who is also the security executive agent. that means a person sets the policy. a council,you have the term all of government has been use, i am sick of that term. that means none of government. is there one person who has the responsibility for fixing this problem, and who are they? chair,uld point to the the performance accountability council. they have the authority to provide direction regarding the process and carry out those functions. >> will that person be here today? >> i believe that person declined. >> will that is kind of ridiculous, isn't it?
5:28 am
the one person in the government that is in charge of this important issue is not here because -- did they have to wash their hair? what is the deal. >> i cannot speak for them. >> that is really disappointing. again, for you. the private sector has moved on from the 1940's style of doing these things. the financial sector does it more quickly. have we tried to learn from them? has there been effort to study how the financial sector does this? >> i do believe the executive branch agencies averaged out to the private sector after the a 120ard shootings a did day review. they identified challenges within the process. there was a lot of coordination with government and nongovernment.
5:29 am
many of the recommendations that they had were recommendations that they had been working on since the reform began back with the passage of -- try tould hope we can learn from the private sector because they are doing this more efficiently. people who come to interview you for the security client -- security clearances, do they carry a clipboard? >> i think they do and i think it is legal sized. me, the clipboard is a sign of not being in the 21st century. >> i am sorry to hear that, i own a couple of the boards. [laughter] >> i use them as a university symbol of authority. if you going to the hospital and they have a clipboard, they are seeking data from you that they are have somewhere in their system. if i could add on the who is in charge you have hit a key point. there are divided responsibilities. some of those divided
5:30 am
responsibilities spill over into the question that the senator theed about focusing on supply side. how do we move people and put them into clearance? there is a demand side to this equation as well. operating under the authorities granted by this committee, a previous dni did a substantial reduction in the number of billets that required a clearance. i think it was something around 700,000 that they eliminated the requirement for clearance. if you could do one thing to reduce the backlog, getting rid of the demand would be one thing. what we have seen over time, this is back to your question of who is in charge, other responsibilities responses to other incidences. the navy yard shooting, for example. when i was in the defense department, what i saw was you had to practically get a clearance to get a pass to get on the base, even though there would be nothing you would ever touch once you got on. that is out of an abundance of
5:31 am
caution that we do not want somebody to come on the base with a gun and kill our people. there are other ways to do that then expanding and lengthening the background investigation process. using 21st-century technology is a key of that. >> i am running out of time and i want to ask one more question. from theect in taking panel that the security clearances are not portable? if you go to another agency you have to start all over? >> it fairies. >> that is a disappointing -- it varies. >> that is a disappointing answer. >> some places take a day or two, other places have an average of almost 100 days. under the same cabinet. believe what you just said. a person within the homeland security department who has a clearance to move from one job
5:32 am
to another job in homeland security takes 100 days? >> yes, it could even me that a contractor at the same desk a link to a new process. >> that is preposterous. >> >> i want to be able to pick up where you left off. that was one of my questions about the reciprocal agreement. of why holding that back the agencies don't trust each other to handle clearances. is this in issue of not trusting people or a common set of standards? combinationbably a of a host of things. the things you could do is number one, force a set of standards. even within dhs, there are only statutory standards for one part.
5:33 am
it has to be the transportation security administration and that is a different line of inquiry. standards and reviewing them and making sure the deviations are the additions to the standards are minimized and have to be approved, so there is a leadership question. >> so what is currently not aligned right now? >> i think it tends to be more on the civilian agency side that in the intel community. i think their standards are a little clearer, but not to us. we as contractors often don't know what standards are going to be applied to the individual .pirit >> where are we deviating in standards? >> the standards should be the same. investigative standards do not differ by category of the workforce. the federal standards are also supposed to be uniformly applied.
5:34 am
data, no measures about the extent to which reciprocity works or does not work. something we have recommended before, that there should be a baseline to determine whether or not reciprocity is working, and if not, to be able to pinpoint the issue. ago, it was believed that reciprocity was not working because agencies did not trust the quality of the investigation that someone else had done, but we do not know what the issue is today. >> so when i meet with the chief capital officers of the agencies, those folks tell me that one of the key areas that slows down federal hiring is this reciprocity issue, that this issue is not only slowing down and creating a bigger andlog and a demand issue
5:35 am
an incredible nuisance for the person, but it is also decreasing our federal hiring and the speed of getting good people on the job. what i am trying to drill down on is is this an issue of agencies not having a standard and adding one more. we have to redo the whole thing rather than trusting somebody else. what is it? issue of the dn i've not issuing a policy on how it should be applied. >> reciprocity is already required? required we were saying it is a matter of releasing a document on how to actually apply? >> current law does apply with servant exceptions so it is up to the dni to know those exceptions so the agencies will be able to determine if an investigator can be accepted.
5:36 am
>> at this point, who is determining what the exceptions are. >> the agencies. >> so they can determine if they trust them or whatever it may be. >> there is some guidance but it is not clear. they are working on a reciprocity policy but we are waiting for the policy to be issued. >> what is the key information gathering that is needed to? you also mentioned individuals needing to get onto a facility that may not need security clearance. what is the lower level that could be done faster to make sure those individuals can get access to do their job and not have to go through the full check. >> the dni does have the authority and responsibility or the standards for security clearance's. there are a second step of standards for suitability or fitness to be in the job, and for the credentials to be able to access those facilities.
5:37 am
those standards are governed by the office of personnel management.pdf. there frequently needs to be better mapping between the student. what this committee could do is to require regular reporting of a lot more information. my information as -- my experience as a government official is when i am required to send you a report on how i am doing, i am going to pay more attention than when i am not. >> do any members seek additional time? >> i just have one more question. who in the united states government decides who is eligible for security clearance? that would usually be the agency of the employee who is applying for clear. the agency takes the investigative report and determines if someone is eligible or not.
5:38 am
>> sometimes there are easy decisions and sometimes there are articles that have to go higher up. this has to do both with the quality characteristics of the individual that also the dynamics of the job and how fast it is needed and how fast the need that. it can be calibrated in terms of who comes into club. -- into play. again, thank you mr. chairman for holding this year. i think getting more members engaged, because we are mostly good people. i go back to these comments. use technology and the closer we can get to this level on one standard, one form and adjudication and clear, seems like it is common sense.
5:39 am
we could make real progress. is: a host of others realize this is a problem. i think the chair for holding this year. i think the vice chair at all the members and all of you on the dais today. i walk away with some degree more optimistic than i came, because i think the biggest issues that you have raised can be solved. and i think this is a question of can we put the right people that understand when you talk about reciprocity, what is that? king, we to senator as we not be shot by dns
5:40 am
move through different areas of government and put it under a new agency. given the baptism by fire of the secretary, it is not unrealistic to believe that they still operate like the core agencies they came out of bed and just having to be under a new banner. i think these are all things that are dual, we just have to have the right leadership in the room talking about real leadership. is the commitments of this committee that we will start and complete that process, and at the end of the day hopefully you can come back and tell us what great things have happened within government, and it will be because of your testimony today. with that, the first ballot is dismissed and i would call up the second panel.
5:41 am
[indiscernible] [indiscernible]
5:42 am
>> i would like to officially call into session the second panel and welcome our witnesses. we just heard from the industry on the challenges that face some potential solutions moving forward. we will now have an opportunity to hear from the executive branch. their perspectives and ideas. understand the daunting task and job before each of you.
5:43 am
it is not easy, but we can do more than what we are doing today. i hope you will speak freely, frankly and speak creatively. this is not just about identify the problem, but about uncovering solutions. i want to thank each of you for being here, and i want to reiterate what i said at the last panel. i am more optimistic right now ,hen i was before we started because i think we have been able to clearly understand. and i think that putting the right people in the room might enable us to try to overcome some of the challenges and thatce it with solutions we feel are worth trying or will i'meve a different outcome
5:44 am
going to turn directly to mr. dunbar who i understand will begin. mr. dunbar, the floor is yours. thank you chairman and members of the committee. thanks for the opportunity to appear before you today and discussed security clearances challenges and reforms. the director of national intelligence designated that a security executive agent in this dni is responsible for the development, imitation, and policies of affective and procedures governing the conduct an investigation's and applicable polygraph for eligibility for access to classified information.
5:45 am
the national counterintelligence security in sensor -- security center has been designated the key facility. we oversee the policies governing the conduct of investigations and adjudication's for approximately 4 million cleared personnel. determiningincludes if a person is suitable to achieve security clearance, a background investigation, investigative results, and determining individuals eligible for access to classified information. we work closely with the agency is responsible for actually conducting the investigations this ensuresion that our policies and practices have been informed by those working to protect our personnel and sensitive information.
5:46 am
we have collectively enjoyed some noteworthy progress in security reform, including the development and implementation of multiple directives, examples of which i have outlined in my written statement . noted today's clearance process is an urgent need of substantial reform across the entire enterprise. we must quickly identify and transformative action to transform the enterprise while at the same time, continuing to ensure a trusted workforce. underpinning this effort must be a robust background investigation process which will enable employees and partners to deliver on agency missions while protecting our nation's secrets. when the background process nationalis delayed,
5:47 am
security is put at risk and our ability to attract or obtain a workforce of the 21st century is inhibited. despite the hard work of dedicated patriotic professionals who are working these issues daily, we have reached a time of critical mass which demands transformative change . significant challenge continues to adversely affect government operations. the current backlog is approximately 500,000 cases, and the average time for investigating clearance is three times longer than the intelligence reform and terrorism prevention act standards. for the first quarter of 2018, those inds indicate the background investigations took an average in excess of 300 days, four times longer than our standards. background,
5:48 am
investigations revealed the costs have risen by 40%. suitability executive agent and all partners agree this is unacceptable. i would like to take this opportunity to provide the committee with more detail regarding our 2.0 initiative. this initiative is designed to address the transformational overhaul. an enterprise effort sponsored by security executive agents and the suitability executive agent in concert with our partner organizations which will bring together key leadership, change agents, industry experts, and innovative thinkers to chart a bold path forward for security and credential enterprise. a participants, including all principal organizations, are committed to critically reviewing and analyzing with a
5:49 am
clean slate and forward meaning approach. my statement, for the record, are trusted initiative kicks off next monday and tuesday. we look forward to conceptualizing, implementing, and ultimately accomplishing revolutionary change required across the clearance. in addition, we look forward preventing progress. we are committed to translational overhaul in at least three areas, first revamping policy framework. the current standards are built upon decades of layered changes and are not fundamentally changed since the 1950's. we have set the ambitious goal that by the end of 2018, we will identify and establish a new set thetandards that transforms
5:50 am
u.s. government's approach to getting his workforce. ensureective must be to a trusted workforce across government and industry who will protect a vital national security information with which they are interested. second, overhauling the enterprise process. the current process is slow and thoroughly reliant on manual fieldwork and is not receptive to advancements in modern technology. finally, modernize information-technology bluetooth technology constraints are built then to transform. we must leverage today's technology to conduct vital is sure processes and we all well-positioned to adopt tomorrow's technology. decade of than a incremental change, there is still an unacceptable burden on government agencies making security determinations. we owe those professionals and
5:51 am
high-performance process that meets the needs of our workforce and ultimately the american citizen. we are committed to full transparency of these efforts. thank you for the opportunity to appear before the committee, and i will be happy to respond. >> would you chairman, vice president, and vice chairman. [laughter] >> i am the director of the national background investigations bureau at the office of personnel management and i appreciate the opportunity to appear before you today. conduct 95% of the investigations across the federal government. the results of this supply chain is used by over a hundred agencies to make their independent decisions. even those few agencies that
5:52 am
have their own delegator's statutory authority to conduct agenciestions such as of the intelligence community rely on our services in some capacity. i would like to start by addressing our existing inventory to put some contacts in 2017, weumbers completed two .5 million investigations across all of our investigative types. inventoryy, our involves tens of thousand records including checks, predictability investigations, and national security investigation. it is important to note that talk and number is much greater than the number of individuals waiting for their initial security clearance to begin working on or with the federal government. a vet total inventory of thousands are simple record checks or our investigation orporting credentials
5:53 am
civilian determinations. remaining inventories for national security determinations or clearance. approximately 337 of those are for initial investigations, and about 200 and 9000 periodic investing. ago, we sit up 17 months we have worked to increase our capacity and realize efficiencies. the stabilization of the top and ,nventory has been detained primarily because we have invested. we are approaching this , firstge on three fronts to recover from the loss of the contract for investigative today, there are thousands of investigators working on behalf. it is good, but not enough. our investigative capacity could be enhanced through smarter use of our time.
5:54 am
through our strategy, we have clearly defined watching the critical process improvements and shortfalls needed to support this requirements and our decisions have been enhanced through better data analytics. have improved our fieldwork logistics by centralizing and prioritizing cases, first with ages -- agencies. currently we are beginning to start with industry. we have increased efficiencies of conducting and recording on our hands interviews and incorporated better methodology to discover and gather information. investigator focus on those aspects of investigations is still critical. third, we are fully supportive of the upcoming executive agencies trusted workforce initiative. our processes today are driven by existing processes, some dating back decades.
5:55 am
we know from our experience that there is much to be gained from this should teach effort and we are behind it. underpinning all of this is the plan to transition to a new .ystem being developed the national background investigation services and this will ultimately serve as our i.t. system to support background investigations and will offer shared services to the end to end process for all departments. with its support of its inner agency processes, they will continue to make improvements to the background investigation process. as an example, we have offered our customer agencies a continuous evaluation process that meets today's guidance issue by the director of national intelligence. to reduce this inventory, we will continue to explore innovative ways to meet our customer agencies need, leveraging their expertise as part of our decision-making process and remain transparent
5:56 am
and accountable for all of our customers. we recognize that our solutions to reduce inventory and maintain the strength includes people. as well as partnerships with our stakeholders agencies, and changes to our overall clearance and investigative processes. , as we work to andngthen the mbm and continue to strengthen our budget and work with our partners to minimize disruptions. with a shared interest in reducing inventory and taking have a shared understanding of the importance of this process and its ultimate impact on. i look forward to answering any .estions you might have heard
5:57 am
>> thank you chairman barrett on behalf of secretary of defense mathis, thank you for the opportunity to meet today to discuss a very important topic at hand . i've submitted by statements, so i'll just like to take the moments to know some points. we'd knowledge and recognize the importance for clearance reform and are committed to doing our part to develop new methods are establishing a trusted workforce . in a manner which a full highest ,tandards of protection safeguarding our people, and ensuring the highest readiness. with the support of multiple committees and are close inner agency partners represented here we have, for the past 18 months, been developing plans
5:58 am
for background investigation. the chair and vice chair may recall we met and talks about this 11 months ago and have been moving out steadily. roofaugust, mathis prison -- secretary mattis approved our plan. this past december, upon approval of the national defense authorization act for 2018, this included direction to the defense department to implement the transition plan we submitted and to do so by october of 2020. we are well underway to meet this objective and cap projects today that the initial phase of the plan, and there are some dependencies, but we are prepared to it let the plan in
5:59 am
october concurred with the next fiscal year. teamsam and inner agency represented today are all working very hard to put the resources and procedures in place to make this happen and mr. payne will talk about that in detail. straight just a transfer of the current mission and method to our departments ,nd in line with the intent this was talked about the 2.0 initiative. they are actively developing procedures for conducting investigations, avenging ourselves with all available technology. our fundamental concept is to build on the existing , which then program security executive agent has artie established. to supplement that with additional tools such as risk rating tools which analyze individual risks by position and
6:00 am
inform us of where to look and his processes. we have automated record checks and this is in use today. to build around that. to enhance that with other tools that give us a full comprehensive picture and a contemporaneous basis for the risks that we are dealing with. the risk associated with responsibility and a host of we are in a position to aggregate the data to give us a much more comprehensive understanding of the risk that we currently have, and that is the risk of the backbone we have worked this with our colleagues and have shared and brief this with many of the industry there is full agreement
6:01 am
that this methodology is final, sufficient, and goes far beyond .here we are today submitting toe the dni our proposal requesting approval to begin raising in the use of this process for selected segments of our workforce and will do this in a graduated manner so we can evaluate the results. where wecan appreciate are and accept the results. at the same time, we have to build up a capacity to do this. , as is a ramped plan three-part plan over three years. prepared toe are formally commence this in october of this year. be a long-term process and will be done in a graduated manner.
6:02 am
we will build up our capacity and bring everyone along with us. we have every ability and full intent and no latitude not to uphold and represent what we are doing. nothing below the waterline that folks won't understand and we are very cognizant of this reciprocity issue and have people need to appreciate what is happening. we are prepared to do that. mindful that we must continue to rely on the national background investigations bureau to process the hundreds of thousands of cases in their inventory. those cases have gone into that system. them to do that now. we are the sponsor for the i.t. system. we will continue to do that and build these tools.
6:03 am
all of these providers will have access to these tools and procedures we are developed in the later stages of our plan, later into next year, we will continue working to understand and implement the resource transfers. the financial resources we put in are on a page to go on a humaning fund, but the capital and workforce that supports us now, as they ramp down, we are 75% of their business load roughly. that, we are working on a plan of what our ramp-up plan is and what their rep. dunn: down plan is obviously i wouldbe in harmony just add here, they have done a tremendous job dealing with a difficult set of challenges.
6:04 am
i can't underestimate the complexity of this endeavor. it is a $1.1 billion enterprise. we have a volume of 700,000 cases a year. there are some eight-10,000 people who do this. keeping them a viable with a re-scope mission and establishing our ability to do our mission would be benefited by the fact that we have control of our own initiation process. we are working on this every day. we have great teamwork and we appreciate the support of congress in this endeavor. mr. chairman, mr. vice
6:05 am
chairman, members of the we do for the opportunity to speak with you. you have i written statements and i'm not going to go into that and will try to keep my comments brief. i will say that i am the individual who is going to be responsible for executing the for background investigations and begin to build that mission. result, mr. phelan and i have to work very closely with -- ourher and our turns teams have to work closely so we do this in a manner that does not inhibit our ability to work down the backlog while at the same time increasing our capacity to investigate. , and in view of the previous panel that was here
6:06 am
, i am responsible for industry security currently. not do the background investigations ourselves, it is mr. phelan that does that, we do background investigations. i am the individual who grants interim security clearance and takes them away. i am also responsible for the execution of dod's continuous which, fromrogram my perspective, has been greatly successful. we have to go down this route and be sure that we are going to make these necessary changes. that, the insider program for d&d. where the insider threats come to.
6:07 am
we work with the individual to resolve those particular issues. all of those things combined, as mr. reid outlined, all of those things combined are things we did not have acted 2004 when it dod had the initial mission. we have them now. that is the way of the future. that is the way we have to go. if are going to make any progress in making this program in making this program faster and making this program more secure. we got to look at a different methodology of doing this. to utilize continuous evaluation and automated processes, many of which mr. reid outlined in his statement. but in addition to that, we have to look at the standards.
6:08 am
we have to change the standards. this are going to do successfully, we have to change the standards. that will result in some big decisions on our part. those the decisions pertain to how much risk we are willing to accept. we will never be able to reduce the risk to zero unless we stop hiring. obviously, we can't stop doing that. there will always be risk involved in the investigative process. there will always be risk in the clearance process. we have to determine how much risk we find acceptable. thank you very much. thank you to all of our witnesses. >> let me tell you a story.
6:09 am
the story starts about 10 years ago. 22-year-old graduates college. plans to work for government, gets offered a job. civilian at dod. more parents were more excited than he was. job, paycheck, things they hope you will find. in the process of 11 months of , he gets backance to some things said in the first panel. i am an exception. that happened to be my son. here is a kid that is incredibly to work for government, work where he did, ready to go. after 11 months, he wonders whether he made the right
6:10 am
decision. he did not lose his skills, like some other today if it is technological. but the question is how much of that initial passion for working for government to you lose from the standpoint of attention down the road? it first hand we have to accomplish what you have set out to do. it is unacceptable to this next generation, just the fact that things go so slowly. knowledge with full knowing that i'm still talking about the federal government and there are some that even congress cannot change. but the reality is we can do much better. appreciate your brief almost a year ago. the timeline is about where you told us it would be. we are excited to see the rollout of a lot of pressure on
6:11 am
your shoulders. i get that. but we can't go forward unless we do this. i know the commitment of dan coats. i don't think that will change as long as he is there. we make sure that we not only accomplish those things, but we managed the solutions. we have good partners. are there additional authorities you need to accomplish this fullyt and eventually move the system to what you have designed? >> from an authority stamp art, us --n 195 gives
6:12 am
reinforces the secretary's authority to conduct a background investigation. it also provides direction, and estimates authority, to consolidate other elements in the department. an -- >> is there any and federal statute today that hinders your ability to change your review process the way you think it needs to be done. i am aware, not in the statute. we are dependent on mr. coates and his leadership to approve our alternative process. secretary mattis can i do that unilaterally. securityholden to the executive agent for the standards they set in a process that control. we don't have a problem with that process.
6:13 am
i do not believe there is anything in federal law that is an impediment to what we want to do. surewould ask you to make from an od standpoint there is not some statute out there that will pop its ugly head up and say, well, you know, it does make a lot of sense what we are -- but you cannot do it. please let us know now so we can implement this in the timeline. >> yes sir. >> i am not adverse to additional investigators. i am not averse to increase in funding. i am averse in doing either of those things before we change the system. until you change, it is hard to truly evaluate what the name will become a what the cost will be.
6:14 am
hopeful, and i'm sure this texasr intent, the this homeland timeline for security approval and drives it down. can you give us what your goal is from the standpoint of a timeline? , it took 11s ago months, i can't imagine what it would be today. now?is your goal >> the established goals under clearance are attainable in each of her plans. the guideline goal is 145 days. it is taking about twice that long. under our plan, our vision is that that investigation is not exist. processontinuous that a would be implemented in place of
6:15 am
that. there will be delivered face-to-face re-upping employees. it is not autopilot. but the monitoring and the reporting, which we are already doing in our program now, will be the backbone the goal is to eliminate the requirement currently existing at all levels. core ask what can i tell that who was to beld civilian dod employee, 22 years old, never lived anywhere but school and home. how long will it take to process him for clearance? >> again, under the current process, that ranges from 200 to 400 days. under the future process, it is perfectly attainable for current guidelines. we feel it can go much lower with the automation and the
6:16 am
tools that i described, sir. i think we have heard a lot of commonality from the first panel in the second panel, in terms of goals. it is not a new problem. i look at the performance of the alaska voters. you had doubling of the backlog. when will we actually get it down. we have a doubling of the costs. everybody using the term continuous evaluation, yet, we element one not the it. we have the notion of increase technology, but i do not see timeline presented. in certain areas, and the financial sector, they have been able to implement tools like continuous evaluation, using increased technology.
6:17 am
i get the frustration on the dod side say we ought to split this up. we accept the fbi, interest come along application, one investigation, one adjudication. it feels like we are going in the opposite direction. i would like to hear how we make sure, as we go through this process, i'm not going to create more duplication, less portability, less reciprocity than what we have right now. >> the application, the standards are federally directed. there is one standard. what we are embarking on a preparing to geomet is alternate methodologies. these guys got together and
6:18 am
looked at the standard. if they change the standard for automatingwe are behind the application the process that we go through to collect the data that is relevant to form the basis of a background investigation that becomes the basis of an adjudicated decision. we're not changing the standard, sir. >> how will you make sure the goal of reciprocity in part feel -- portability safe place where you build this new situation. that will be by a to the guidelines set is executive agent. so everything we implement implement during the high school authority to change that process . we will align our process. i know you are trying to head us in the right direction, but it sounds like a lot a process words rather than specific
6:19 am
guidelines, times, and how we will get there. i share the chairman's concern about throwing money. kind of buildies this into their jihad -- their dna and do not prioritize funding. i think we ought to the throne dollars, but we need to make sure that agencies make this a priority within their funding scheme. i hope dod, which is gotten a generous bump up in the last budget, take this on. it will be very disappointed next to the senator. phelan, stabilizing at 700,000 is not acceptable. i would like to know when we will see those numbers pridgeon down on the back wall. also, senator heinrich: raised
6:20 am
issues in the other hearing, about it techniques that the government labs were using, in terms of potential honey and permanent abuse. sense. common what can you say specifically about using these tools across the breath of air is where there is federal employees. how we send the backlog down. >> when i first joined this organization, the capacity to conduct the work that we were to do was insufficient to conduct that work, period.
6:21 am
that's why, as you saw the first few months, after we set up, that inventory continue to rise as opposed to destabilize. the point ofed where we have the same capacity in 2014, when all this fell apart, that is a way station to the point of civilization. it is not the end game. in one sense, and proud we hit that civilization. but i am not proud we have not brought it down. week, i noted to a committee on the other side, the house side, that we are looking 15%, 20%ly as much as reduction by this time. that is still not sufficient. but it will be by itself -- it -- by itself, it will take a couple of years to draw that down. along the way, we are trying a number of things. we talked about technology. we need to be able to get at
6:22 am
information, collect information more reliably, more quickly through technology as opposed to shoe leather. thoseoblem is getting sources right now, particularly law enforcement services. we still have to put a lot of people on the street to find relevantcords in areas. but we continue to work with police agencies at the state and local level, the tribal level to continue to do that. that with the department of energy and a surge a los alamos.ving it looked very promising. since the point, we have done a number of things that are having and surging. most recently, we finished one at patterson air force base. we saw an increased efficiency of somewhere in the low 40%,
6:23 am
whatever would be an hours worth of work, they were finishing in 36 minutes. that is a rough estimate. they were far more productive in that having area. you mention the area around tidewater. we have pulled together all of the federal agencies down there, all the dod agencies and pulled together all of our assets and we will focus on that area. that is one of probably about eight or nine that i can mention in the last year that we will have done this and get positive results. certainly dayton, san antonio, nevada, tigger air force base,, city, and whether that will be very promising on two fronts. been working with industry directly defined areas not by company, but by geography in my program, to find those areas where we can focus our resources. places like southern california,
6:24 am
, like space ghost in florida, where we can work with industry to focus our energies on there. the second part of that is to .ollow on to it it is clear that industry collection lot of data before we put somebody in for a clearance, before they can hire somebody. we need to find a way to leverage the work they have and notdone, accepted have to go back and answer the same questions. that will reduce a lot of time in collection and effort. >> i asked that question
6:25 am
yesterday and spoke to the folks in charge of the activities in this area. actually glows to being up to speed in the washington, d.c. area. there are other parts of the country where summaries .ackground will take them prior to 2005, we were responsible for private investigation. >> why will this have a better because last time it was turned over and now it is coming back? give me the key lessons learned. >> mr. payne touchstone of those, having a conference a process in place to deal with the volume and the scale of
6:26 am
investigative items. the continuous evaluation tools are different. additional tools we are developing to streamline the submission process within the department. if you look at the current process and you look at past practice, there is a high percentage of dragon the system between submission and investigation and get all the data. we have tools in place to improve upon that. talked about the streamline background investigation and the centrality of positioning of our consolidated injured nation facility, which did not exist at that time either. we have in place or we will have a place all three pieces of this enterprise, submissions, recitations and adjudications, all under the single authority. currently, the number one reform agendas clearance reform. isretary mattis firmly
6:27 am
actively involved in pushing us to better solutions and to make this functionality not a back office they let somebody doesn't the department, but the security focus that exists in the leadership now cannot be any higher today and we have the pieces aligned to put this into action. the goals that are the nichols and noses type goals. processs speed up the >> yes and yes. >> and terms of speeding the process, current timelines were experiencing 150 or so days for a real level investigation. we will illuminate that completely. current background investigation, fieldwork, our studies and pallets and everything that we put into place now, using aggregated data
6:28 am
tools that i talked about can get us 90% of everything we are getting out from the field investigation on the front end. and then the tools can focus on the last 10%. we will still have to go out and do some fieldwork. but 90% of the fieldwork can be handled through automatic processes. that will jot down the capacity needed to do this field investigations and and therefore drive down the cost per unit that we currently provide to opium. >> approval is still a hundred 50 days. and time, new person,
6:29 am
mystery reeves outline, using continuous evaluation. maybe i want to finesse that a little bit. continuous evaluation as opposed to continuous vetting.
6:30 am
the program is designed to look ofa risk in between periods reinvestigation. they have seven data sources they are requiring every agency to utilize when they do continuous evaluation. valuation. when you talk about continuous betting, i am looking at expanding that into other sources. other data sources within the dod, the federal government, the data center. we can pool all of those things together. and do those on a continuous basis. we are doing those things on a continuous basis, there is no need to do a reinvestigation on someone at the secret level unless you come up with derogatory information. that is where the significant savings is going to be.
6:31 am
>> thank you mr. chairman. thank you chairman. i have been surprised we have not had to talk much about money. are there adequate resources in terms of money and people? is this just management and automation? are there shortfalls in terms of the number of people necessary to work down this backlog? under the current process and our current operation, we have a working capital fund and a evolving font and agent is that wish to have an investigation. give us the money to have the investigation done. .rom our standpoint i think a better question would which needagencies to have an investigation conducted funded appropriately.
6:32 am
>> are there sufficient personnel? is there a shortage of qualified people? dothe high-end of people who investigative work is stressed at this point, though we have encouraged our suppliers and ourselves to continue hiring. there are nearly adequate but we still have much more work to do, and if we don't change we willprocesses, then still need to continue hiring beyond all of that and that was even greater stress. so that is an additional imperative to seek technological productivity. >> yes. i think this could go to any of you, but i will address it to mr. is the portability we have talked about part of this , to consider that
6:33 am
factor so we don't have to redo these tests? let me ask a specific question. we heard about dhs where we have to have a whole new investigation to go from one job in the same please tell me that doesn't happen in the department of defense. >> nosair, it does not. we are all under one roof. we have, for years, had a single adjudication facility within the department. >> the clearances are portable within the department of defense? >> absolutely. >> is the portability issue in other agencies part of this reinvention? issue isrtability mostly a singular investigation. any agency can do the
6:34 am
investigation, but it is up to that agency to do the adjudication. you heard earlier within dhs, the same set of facts, they might ask for more information. portability isn't a part of the overall structure, it is agency by agency whether they will accept or do reciprocity? abouthink it is less structure and more about empowerment and encouraging them to accept decisions made by others in previous lives. a decision made by one agency, the second to accept they did a good job and was honest about how to approach it. not reinitiate an investigation. reid, why is mr. it that it has taken so long to transition from the opm to the
6:35 am
department of defense? you are talking about 2020, and it started last year. defense authorization act requires us to implement the plan by october 2020. byintend to implement this october of 2018. sen. king: on time and under budget? >> well, start by 2020. it did not tell us how long to finish, but we submitted a three-year plan. the expectation is we take three years. when we moved it out of dod last time, it took more than five years. it is complicated. the short answer, we want to do it in a phase, deliberate, and graduated way. -- other phases of the government rely on us to do that. it will help our inventory. when we start processing new cases separately, that will
6:36 am
drive down the new work that of tens of phalen thousands of cases a week. got and turn off that spi help with the backlog. sen. king: i'm out of time, but quickly, you used a phrase that struck me. you said we have to change the standards. do you mean lower the standards? >> i don't necessarily mean lower the standards. the federal investigative standards dictate what steps have to be taken to achieve a secret level of security clearance by top-secret level of security clearance. as has been outlined -- sen. king: it is the steps that has to be. >> correct. sen. king: that's what i needed to know. thank you. i have sen
6:37 am
made a special focus of my work during this russian inquiry to follow the money kind of questions. i want to ask a couple questions relating to that. the question is, should someone financialto disclose entanglements with a foreign adversary be eligible for a security clearance? that is a yes or no question. i'm not sure i have a yes or no answer for you. i believe it would play a prominent role in a decision as to whether that individual should be granted a clearance and it is not an inconsequential question to ask. but how is it not a yes or no? we are talking about significant financial entanglements with a foreign adversary. shouldn't somebody who fails to disclose that -- it is one thing
6:38 am
if it is disclosed and you have a debate, but failure to disclose seems to me a different matter altogether. i gather you don't think necessarily that somebody who fails to disclose a significant financial entanglements with a foreign adversary shouldn't we denied a security clearance. >> that is not what i meant to say. under the adjudicated standards, there is nothing that says if you do this, you can't have a clearance. it says to the adjudicator to take into account all you know about this individual, make a decision regarding their candor, their entanglements, their families, regarding crime, regarding all sorts of things, and make a decision. i would say the scenario you prominentth be a thought to be considered during the adjudication, but there is
6:39 am
nothing that any of those things by themselves are disqualifying. it is important to consider. sen. wyden: do you believe it is enough to be disqualifying? >> i would have a hard time overcoming that. sen. wyden: thank you. under what circumstances should individuals with an interim clearance get fbi clearance type of access? that is for you, mr. dunbar. mr. dunbar: senator, as we heard today, interim clearances have been used throughout the government for some time, many years. there are specific. government documents for interim clearances. the guidance is out there now allows interim clearances at the secret level as well as the top-secret level. there are situations called out in the guidelines which speak to urgency of circumstances, those
6:40 am
types of ideas about how when somebody might be granted an interim security clearance. i believe an example that would be applicable here is an incoming administration which has the need to onboard personnel and get them into positions as soon as possible in order that they can perform the duties of their function. in regard to mr. kushner's sinceic case, the dni policy standards and requirements. as mr. phelan stated, each individual adjudication, and iss is in agent number four, treated based on the whole person concept in which every particular piece of information, positive or negative, past or
6:41 am
present, all of these things are factored into the adjudication. in my phalen has stated, opinion, the issues you have raised would be issues which would need to be thoroughly v etted in the course of the exit -- investigation. i have no reason to doubt that the federal bureau of investigation would not investigate each and every issue pulse only. -- wholesomely. sen. wyden: let me ask another question. ,uring our open hearing chairman, to his credit, mentioned security clearances being central to the question of protecting sources and methods. withed fbi director ray respect to rob porter how that decision was made. when did the fbi notify the white house? it was clear when you listen to wray's answer, it is
6:42 am
what generalfar as kelly said to the american people. specifically, who makes decisions at the white house, and with regard to white house personnel, in your view, who would make decisions to grant an interim clearance holder access to top secret fbi information? >> senator, that decision would housee by the white office personnel security based on an investigation conducted by the fbi. wyden: my time is up. i would only say i'm not so sure as of now who actually makes that decision, because we have heard mr. kelly speak on it, i understand the point that was made by all of you who are testifying. i think it still remains to be seen who would make that
6:43 am
decision to grant an interim clearance. i'm over my time. thank you. >> senator harris. mr. senator, since you do most of these right now, is it unusual or is it acceptable that as an individual who has filed for security clearance finds out they let something off their application, are they offered the opportunity to update that for consideration? >> yes. if somebody left it off, they could add it on and that would be considered in the whole of the evaluation. >> yes, it would be. we frequently find two scenarios. number one, i just forgot when i was filling out to put that on times whenthere are we will go in and conduct the investigation and have a face-to-face conversation. sen. burr: that actually
6:44 am
happened in more than the one instance that senator wyden referred to. >> we find it happens with some regularity. sen. heller: thank you. i think it is missed -- important for the public to understand why these background checks are so important to determine suitability for classified information. can you explain to the american public why these are so important to national security? mr. phalen: yes. we as a government owe it to the american people and taxpayer to ensure that people who are working in the national security arena and in areas where there is a public trust that we have done everything we can, within reason, to determine that trust can be placed into that person.
6:45 am
i know in an earlier part of the conversation at an earlier hearing, there was a conversation about, should we reduce the number of people who clearances.i think there is not so much a counter argument, but when you have people in this particular environment in the earlier panel where they have access daily to national security information, secrets that give this country and edge in war and peace, at the same time we have industrial partners that are building all of those tools that help us fight those wars or keep the peace. this is a very simple thing i have said in other venues. do you want to have less trust in the guy turning bolts on an assembly line or more trust? we probably want more rather than less. senator harris in addition to the trust, is it also decade that the code regulation lays out criteria for determining suitability, not only for who we can trust, but also to expose what might be weaknesses in a
6:46 am
presence background that might make them susceptible to compromise or manipulation by foreign governments and adversaries? mr. phalen: correct. this is looking at history, do you have already record at betraying trust? continuous vetting or evaluation portion, to say, what is changing in their lives and how do we predict whether they are going to go horribly bad before they get that far? sen. hirono:'s -- senator harris: one of the considerations is financial. i will assume we have 13 factors because we have imagined scenarios where each of them, and any combination could render someone susceptible to the manipulation we have discussed. can you tell us what we imagine might be of the exposure and when we of an applicant are concerned about their financial interests, and in particular those related to foreign financial
6:47 am
considerations? nutshell, ann a individual who has entangled themselves, whether foreign or situationsancial that put them over their head, which causes people to make bad decisions. in some cases, we found in history of espionage, it causes them to say i have something valuable, let me sell it. sen. harris: how much information is an applicant required to give for foreign financial consideration? are required to identify foreign financial investments, obligations, and -- , sen. harris: foreign loans? mr. phalen: yes. sen. harris: when we talk about foreign press and it is -- interests and it is listed as a concern, what are we looking at? be, an in: it would
6:48 am
influenced by either a relationship i have with someone foreign, a relationship i have with an entity that is foreign which could be a orpany, it could be a prior coexisting citizenship i have of a foreign country, it could be a family member, let's say someone from a foreign country, and how much influence that would have over my judgment as to whether i will protect or not protect secrets and trust. sen. harris: given your extensive experience and knowledge in this area, can you tell us what are the things individuals are most commonly like mailed for? -- blackmailed for? mr. phalen: i have to go back and do more research. the instances of blackmailed by people committing espionage is not as substantial as the incident of people who simply made a bad decision based on financial or other entanglements, and they just
6:49 am
make poor decisions and aside their personal life is worth more than my country. sen. harris: right. i have one final question. this is for mr. payne. according to press for thirds last fall, he said "if we don't do interim clearances, nothing gets done." you said we got murderers with access to classified information, rapists, pedophiles, people in child pornography, all these things at the interim clearance level, and i am pulling their interim clearances on a weekly basis. this would cause anyone great concern. , of course, the inference is that interim clearances don't disclose serious elements of someone's background. -- weu please tell us also know there are more than 100 staffers in the executive office of the president on interim clearances -- what we are going to do about this?
6:50 am
lengthuld say that the of time someone stays in an interim capacity has to be limited as much as possible. to give you an example from dod standpoint, and my area of jurisdiction right now is industry -- last year, we issued 80,000 interim clearances to industry. currently, there's about 58,000 people on interim clearances. if you look at the timeline that they have had their interim clearances, it ranges anywhere from six months to two years. if you look at just the last year in terms of interim clearances, let me give you a couple of statistics here -- 486 people from industry had their clearances denied last year.
6:51 am
of their main security clearance, they were denied. those had beenf granted interim clearances. during the process of the investigation, information was developed during the investigation that resulted in us pulling the interim clearances of 151 of those individuals, and the remainder were individuals who did things after they received their interim clearances. risk, you can see the risk involved with interim clearances and the need to reduce the amount of time that we have somebody in an interim capacity as much as possible. sen. harris: i agree. thank you. >> i appreciate the panel and i appreciate your answers in the first panel as well. this is a high, high priority issue, i think for all of us.
6:52 am
we have to get this improved. onell leave you with comment, because it has been a long morning. i will leave you with one question for the record that was raised in the first panel. i would like to get a full answer from each of you. i would argue that along more open source documents, we had to need toresh look at the have over 4 million plus people go through a clearance process of any type, particularly the tremendous growth of top-secret clearances versus simply secret. i would like to hear back in writing from all of you, what can we do, what would be your policy recommendations so that we could not have so many people actually have to funnel through on the demand side going forward where more and more information will be out?
6:53 am
thank you for holding this in open setting. >> i think the ball -- vice chairman and all the members. this is one of those issues that the membership of of this committee has been extremely engaged on. i want to thank the first handle members who -- panel members who chose to stay and listen. i am always shocked at the number of people who have the opportunity to testify and stay and choose not to do that. i really respect the ones that do take the time to do that. notank all four of you for only providing us your testimony today, but for the jobs you do. you have a big job to do. mr. phalen, you walked in when not many people would do this. [laughter] you have performed as well as one can do. that is faced with you -- losing
6:54 am
80% of your business down the road. mr. dunbar, i'm not sure you knew you signed up for this when the director asked you to come important.s is here ande chatted up other members have gotten the opportunity to question you, we are confident this might be a model we are beginning to see , and thean replicate energy between you and mr. phalen, that exchange is going to happen, and there's a director -- an opportunity for you and director codes to coalesce the rest of government towards this model. the one word that didn't come up in the second panel was reciprocity. either onehing that
6:55 am
of you are doing on both ends. where it solves the problem of reciprocity either within an agency or between agencies. we had an officer that got the security clearance at the state department, but for us, the that theyrtment said don't have accreditation with the cia. so she had to physically go pick up her paperwork and take it to the agency to be recognized. you would think in 2018, something like that wouldn't exist. it is bad enough that it does, whyi think when we look at are we doing this? it is to make sure the next generation of workers that will come through the pipeline actually want to do it and can do it, and do it in a timeframe
6:56 am
.hat they are accustomed to italy's mystifies me that someone is willing to share their entire life story, because they do. everything is out there to be exposed, because they believe in what they are doing. i want to make sure the next generation has just as much passion about doing this. we wouldn't be quite involved if passion of thehe vice chairman. he has been relentless on this. -- i will offer that committeees being involved in the issue of reciprocity and how we bring agencies together to work through some of those things. it's not that the director .oesn't have authority to do it
6:57 am
sometimes having a congressional piece involved in those provides the director and additional stick that he might not have without us. mr. reid, i hope your history at least annual updates, if not faster, that you will continue those and that this committee will have a real inside look into the success of up,model you are setting and much of what we are able to accomplish is because of the investment you have made not only today but prior to this, and we are grateful for this. with that, this hearing is adjourned.
6:58 am
6:59 am
>> c-span2 has live coverage -- rally back relations on live coverage of the senate hearing on domestic violence in the military.
7:00 am
in about an hour, we will talk trade policy and tariffs with marcy kaptur.oman conversation continues with jodey arrington of texas. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016]] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] host: there are questions this morning on if president trump will sign a new package of terrorist against imported steel and aluminum. that signing was supposed to take place this afternoon. but there are reports as of late yesterday that that may not happen because details are still eing worked out. democrats on capitol hill released a plan for infrastructure. they want to invess $1 trillion and they want to roll back the tax cut that wealthy americans received under president trump tax cut law. and speaking of the tax cuts, for the first how, we want you to tell us w


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on