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Thread: TS/SCI vs. TS

  1. #1
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    TS/SCI vs. TS

    Can someone granted TS not get the SCI portion?

    Once you get TS does one automatically get SCI as the need to know arises?

    What little I think know:

    Confidential information- requires a BI
    Secret Information- requires a 7 year exhaustive BI
    Top Secret Information- requires a 10 year exhaustive BI

    Sensitive Compartmented Information- requires a TS clearance, for you to have need to know, and a confidentiallity agreement.

    I don't even want to address the DOE, L and Q clearances....

    Thanks ahead of time.

  2. #2
    miguy's Avatar
    miguy is offline Officer
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    "Can someone granted TS not get the SCI portion?"

    Absolutely. The agency requesting your BI is normally the adjudication authority, and they determine your level of access based off what your job will likely require. I've known people that had just a collateral TS (that means no SCI). If they later require SCI access, then the level of their investigation may play a role. If the investigation was thorough enough to grant the SCI, then they can often just grant it based off the original investigation. If it wasn't, then they may need another BI conducted that meets requirements for SCI access. If you're going to work with the intel community, having a collateral TS is pretty close to useless, as much of the info you'd need to work with is probably compartmented.

    "Once you get TS does one automatically get SCI as the need to know arises?"

    No.

    "What little I think know:
    Sensitive Compartmented Information- requires a TS clearance, for you to have need to know, and a confidentiallity agreement."

    ALL security clearances require you to sign a classified nondisclosure agreement, regardless of level.

  3. #3
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    So though there is no higher clearance than TS, SCI requires a different BI, is it more stringent? If so, how does that not translate to a higher clearance?

  4. #4
    dmclark's Avatar
    dmclark is offline Moderator & Double X-Fed
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    Because anything "above" TS is letter coded and compartmented on a need to know basis. This is ACCESS, which is alot different than CLEARANCE. You can have clearance, but not access. You can't have access without clearance. DM
    “Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!”
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  5. #5
    miguy's Avatar
    miguy is offline Officer
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    The gov't has only 3 levels: Confidential, Secret, and TS. It is possible to be granted SCI access at ANY of these levels: for example, I've known people with Secet/SCI clearances. Now, you may argue that SCI is the highest level, but that person with the Secret/SCI clearance won't have access to info that somone else has who has a TS clearance without the SCI access does. In that case, person 1 and person 2 would each have access to a type of info that the other didn't. SCI just gives you the ability to gain access to compartmented information, IF YOU HAVE THE NEED TO KNOW. I can't answer your question about differences in BI's for SCI versus non-SCI clearances, as I am not a background investigator. Regardless of everything above, I wouldn't worry about ANY of these issues. Your hiring agency knows what you need, and they will give the level of access you need to do your job.

  6. #6
    FPS207 Guest
    All I can add is that while in the Army, I had a TS/SCI/SBI. I am not sure why the Army listed it this way and if it had any significance. The SBI portion stood for Special Background Investigation which would be obvious for the SCI portion of my TS.

    While in the Army, I learned that with a TS/SCI, I was not privy to info in the same unit I was in and that I had to be cleared for the specific information they wanted me to see or know. Special Compartmented Info to my surprise limited my TS and I had to be cleared to access different types of info. I assumed a large cloaking type clearance which meant if it was TS then I could see anything.
    Last edited by FPS207; 03-06-2004 at 14:39.

  7. #7
    Fidelis770 Guest
    Without getting to deep into it, we must protect our sources and that is one of the reasons why we compartment information that is so critical. This gives us the ability to give temporary access to a specific compartment because you have the need to know and the information is paramount to the current job you hold. So you can be read in (given access) to a specific SCI "category" or "compartment" and then be read back out (access is taken away). Hope this helps and makes some kind of sense. In order to even be able to be read in, you have to have SCI eligibility, which is separate from whatever clearance you have ...ie C, S, TS.

  8. #8
    miguy's Avatar
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    TS/SCI/SBI just means you have a TS/SCI based off an SBI investigation. The SBI really doesn't need to be in there at all. SCI access in no way limits your access. It just means you CAN BE GRANTED access to "sensitive compartmented information". There are probably thousands of different special access programs out there, and having the TS/SCI means that if you have a need to know, they will "read you on" or "indoctrinate you" into only those programs you need to do your job. SCI doesn't mean that you get the magic handshake, after which they tell you who killed kennedy, and that aliens like strawberry ice cream best, and you have unlimited access to all information the US gov't knows. It merely means that you have the ABILITY to be indoc'd into compartmented programs *IF YOU NEED ACCESS*. Plenty of people are out there with TS/SCI clearances, but with zero access. It just gives you the flexibility when/if the need arises. In short, SCI does NOT limit you. You will be given different accesses ad hoc, when and if you need them. Without SCI access, you couldn't be given access to the specific compartmented information or the special access program.

  9. #9
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    Thank you for your replies.

    I really didn't understand the distinction as I have come to understand that all TS information is need to know, so why is it necessary to have SCI?

    My father-in-law was really curious and in true disbelief when I said that I had to have something beyond TS for a State DSS position.

    He, a long retired SAC Colonel with USAF, has been there and done that or flown over it....was trying to make the statements you all made clear, clear.

  10. #10
    miguy's Avatar
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    Yes, all TS info is need to know. Issues arise, however, because people can't just say (1) I have a need to know and (2) I have the clearance so (3) tell me what I want. SCI gives us another layer of protection, and the information is given more security and is tracked more closely than collateral information. Here's an example: CIA man works intel sources in country X (the bad country). He pays people for info that the U.S. (that's us - the good country) wants. Now NIMA man works in a room without windows and tasks/flies satellites each day. Both jobs are obviously sensitive, and will need a TS/SCI clearance. Now think about the training that each person receives. CIA man has to know how to use his disappearing cloak, romance women in ways only seen in James Bond episodes, and blend into the local populace. NIMA man has to know how to use extraordinarily complex computers, romance a big cup of coffee from the disgruntled government secretary, and blend into the office when his supervisor gets angry. As you can see, both individuals need a high clearance, but neither person has any reason to have the training or information access that the other requires to do their job. In short, SCI is necessary to make sure that the 'need to know' portion is adhered to. NIMA man, and probably everyone in NIMA man's office have no knowledge of how CIA man operates or is trained, and they don't have the means to gain that info because it is compartmented and more strictly controlled and distributed, as everyone knows that NIMA has no need to know how to use the Vulcan mind meld or neck pinch. Likewise, CIA man has no way of finding out how to fly satellites.

  11. #11
    mleslie's Avatar
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    SCI is a Special Access Program (SAP). There are many special access programs out there. There are also different levals of background investigations, ENTNAC, NACI, SBI, SSBI etc.

    In order to get a TS clearance you need to go through an SBI or SSBI. If your investigation is favorably adjudicated you are given a clearance of TS. If you need access to SCI, and have a need to know you are "read on" to the program. However just because you have a TS clearance does not mean you can see everything out there.

  12. #12
    mycorrado Guest
    a related question..

    Which programs from the soup are sensitive enough that won't be granted if your relatives are non-citizens?

    (related to jobs like Intelligence Analysts, or counter-intelligence)

  13. #13
    hanazonocho is offline Rookie
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    non-citizens

    well...they say that in order to have an SCI clearance your immediate family member are to be US citizens....but there are exceptions under DCI 6/4. It all depends on where your family members are from.

  14. #14
    mycorrado Guest
    Thanks, i was checking DCI 1/14 this morning, I will go read on it.

    What confused me is the DIA won't even consider an applicant with foreign ties. I would think you can apply an request an exception..

  15. #15
    hanazonocho is offline Rookie
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    DIA

    DCI 6/4 replaced 1/14 by the way...

    DIA WILL accept people with non-citizens....they accepted me....it just depends on the country...


 
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