SIS Vetting

The Dom Post reports how nine DPMC employees are yet to receieve their SIS vetting for a security clearance.

To be fair to the current administration, this is nothing new. I didn’t get my clearance for several months after I started work in the Beehive in 1996. Initially just cleared for “secret” but when made permament for “top secret”. For some reason I was asked to go down to SIS HQ to be interviewed, and this was almost unheard of. I never worked out whether it was due to my involvement with the Michael Laws faxes (a long story) or having dated an East German! Anyway interview went fine (I poined out the East German was nine ehwn the Berlin Wall went down) and I got my clearance. To my disappointment I never got to see the launch codes, but I did get involved with budget secrets and one did have to exercise real mental discipline over who did and didn’t know what was in the budget.

By coincidence just a few hours after blogging about the SIS in late June, I got a phone call from them asking if I could pop into the HQ. Alas, not to put me on the payroll for defending them against the SST, but because I was named as a referee for a Beehive employee who was undergoing vetting. It was again fairly unusual to be interviewed in person, as it is normally all done through paper interviews.

The SIS Officer who called me, was I think somewhat surprised when, after I agreed to pop in, I railed off their address, their floor and the way to get through the initial security up onto their floor and asked if that was still correct. It was – and there seemed to be some concern that I knew this, so I explained I had once before been a visitor.

Of my two interviews I have to say I enjoyed being a referee much more than being a security applicant. We actually ended up chatting over a variety of topics.

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