Take charge of finances before you lose your clearance

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Samantha Krolikowski
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Did you know your security clearance could be affected if you get into financial trouble?

“Anyone who holds a clearance can be subjected to blackmail or coercion if their finances create a vulnerability,” said Steven Doll, 92nd Air Refueling Wing personnel security. “This in turn creates a national security risk for classified information.”

All individuals who hold a security clearance are held to a standard of loyalty, trustworthiness and reliability. When an individual begins to spend beyond their means, it can in return affect their clearance and ultimately, their career.

Through the Department of Defense Continuous Evaluation Program, the DoD Consolidated Adjudications Facility randomly checks the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network database, to include credit bureaus such as: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. The FINCEN database tracks all finances for anyone who has a clearance, Doll added.

“It’s important to stay on track of finances because poor personal financial management can lead security clearance adjudicators to question a person’s reliability and trustworthiness which are key components when determining someone's suitability to handle classified or other sensitive duties,” said Susan Conard 92nd Air Refueling Wing chief information protection.

A clearance can be suspended if an individual files bankruptcy, has liens placed on property, foreclosures, wage garnishments, collections, repossessions, court judgments, failure to pay child support, reckless gambling debt, improper use of government funds, failure to pay taxes, defaulting on a loan, or over 120 days delinquent on any debt.

“Any unexplained affluence, meaning a person who comes into a significant sum of money, can be an indicator of a security clearance risk,” Doll said.

These examples are all mandatory reporting to your security manager and unit commander. If an Airman is having financial trouble, it’s best to get them help before it’s too late.

“Protect your finances and your financial health, because it could cost you your clearance and possibly career if you don’t,” Doll said.

For security clearance questions, contact your security manager or Steve Doll at 509-247-5860.