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NPR 1600.3A
Effective Date: August 03, 2020
Expiration Date: August 03, 2025
Printable Format (PDF)

Subject: Personnel Security

Responsible Office: Office of Protective Services

| TOC | Preface | Chapter1 | Chapter2 | Chapter3 | AppendixA | AppendixB | AppendixC | ALL |

Appendix A. Definitions

Access - The explicit granting of permission to enter and/or use facilities, interact with personnel, and/or use information and related information processing services.

Adjudication - A fair and logical determination, based upon established adjudicative guidelines and sufficient investigative information, as to whether or not an individual’s suitability for employment, fitness to perform work, and/or eligibility for access are in the best interests of the U.S. Government.

Adjudicative System of Record - Previously referred to as the Clearance Verification System or CVS, the official system(s) for maintaining records of all adjudicative actions.

Applicant - An individual undergoing vetting through an investigative process.

Asset - A system, object, person, or any combination thereof that has importance or value; includes contracts, facilities, property, records, unobligated or unexpended balances of appropriations, and other funds or resources.

Automated Record Checks - A centralized and integrated set of electronic services to request, collect, and validate electronically accessible, adjudicative-relevant data using the most efficient and cost-effective technology and methods available.

Center Chief of Protective Services (CCPS) - See definition for Center Chief of Security (CCS).

Center Chief of Security (CCS) - The senior Center security official who is responsible for management of the Center security program.

Central Adjudication Facility (CAF) - Facility established at the OPS Security Management Division level responsible for adjudicating all requests for clearances to access CNSI.

Certification - A formal process used by the certifying official to ensure that an individual has met all established training requirements as necessary to perform their security responsibilities.

Classified Material - Any physical object on which is recorded, or in which is embodied, CNSI that can be discerned by the study, analysis, observation, or other use of the object itself.

Classified National Security Information (CNSI) - Information that is protected against unauthorized disclosure and is marked to indicate its classified status when in documentary form.

Cohabitant - An individual with whom the applicant resides.

Component Facilities - NASA-owned facilities not located on any NASA Center (e.g., Michoud Assembly Facility, Wallops Flight Facility, and White Sands Test Facility).

Continuous Evaluation - Reviewing the background of an individual who is eligible for access to CNSI or who holds a sensitive position (including additional or new checks of commercial and Government databases and other lawfully available information) at any time to determine whether that individual continues to meet the requirements for eligibility for access to CNSI and/or to hold a sensitive position.

Contractor - For the purpose of this NPR, any non-NASA entity or individual working on a NASA installation or accessing NASA physical or logical resources for an employer who is subject to E.O. 11246.

Core Duty - A continuing responsibility that is of a particular importance to the relevant covered position or the achievement of an agency’s mission.

Corroborate - Comparing information from any ISP with that provided by the subject to confirm the information or identify discrepancies.

Covered Individual - Any person who performs work for or on behalf of the executive branch or who seeks to perform work for or on behalf of the executive branch.

Credential - For the purposes of this policy, a smartcard (PIV or Agency Smart Badge) issued to an individual that contains stored biometric information so that the claimed identity of the cardholder can be verified against the stored information manually or by an automated process.

Critical Sensitive - One of the three levels for designating national security-related positions and the degree of risk involved. Includes any position involving access to Top Secret information.

Debarment - Official determination made in writing by the Center Director or Center Chief of Security that bars, for cause, an individual from accessing NASA property.

Denial - The adjudication that an individual’s initial access to CNSI would pose a risk to national security, after review procedures set forth in E.O. 12968 have been exercised.

Determination - A decision by an agency that an individual has or does not have the required level of character and conduct necessary to perform work for or on behalf of a Federal agency.

Employee - A NASA civil service employee or NASA contractor.

Enhanced Subject Interview - An in-depth discussion between a trained and certified investigator and the subject conducted as a required part of an investigation or to offer the subject an opportunity to explain, refute, or mitigate issue or discrepant information.

Excepted Service - Those positions: (a) not in the competitive service, (b) not in the Career Senior Executive Service, and (c) not in the intelligence community unless covered by OPM appointing authorities.

Executive Order (E.O.) - Official documents, numbered consecutively, through which the President of the United States manages the operation of the Federal Government.

Fitness - The level of character and conduct determined necessary for an individual to perform work for or on behalf of a Federal agency as an employee in the excepted service (other than a position subject to suitability) or as a contractor employee.

Foreign National - For the purpose of this policy, any person who is not a citizen of the United States including lawful permanent resident (i.e., holders of green cards) or persons admitted with refugee status to the United States. See definition of Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) in this chapter.

Formerly Restricted Data (FRD) - Information developed by the Department of Energy (DOE) related to national nuclear programs with strict access restrictions, “Restricted Data (RD),” but that has subsequently been downgraded to a lower level of control and accountability.

Immediate Family - The spouse, parents, siblings, children, and cohabitant of the subject. This includes any stepparents, half siblings and stepsiblings, and stepchildren of the subject.

Intelligence Community - The aggregate of the following executive branch organizations and agencies involved in intelligence activities: the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, offices within the Department of Defense for the collection of specialized national foreign intelligence through reconnaissance programs, the Bureau of Intelligence and Research of the Department of State, intelligence elements of the military services, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Energy, and staff elements of the Office of the Director of Central Intelligence.

Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Employees - Individuals on temporary assignments between Federal agencies and state, local, and Indian Tribal Governments; institutions of higher education; and other eligible organizations.

Investigative Questionnaire System of Record - Previously the Electronic Questionnaires for Investigation Processing or e-QIP system, the official system(s) for maintaining records of all investigative information, including self-reporting biographic details, declarations, clarifications, and mitigating information necessary to conduct investigations.

Investigative Record - The official record of all data obtained on the subject from trusted information providers from suitability and/or security applications and questionnaires and any investigative activity conducted under Federal standards.

Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) - A foreign national, legally permitted to reside and work within the U.S. who may be employed in the Federal sector for specific needs or under temporary appointments but who may not be granted access to CNSI. For more information, refer to NPR 1600.4.

Logical Access - Access to information records, data, systems, and applications.

NASA Worker - Persons who directly support the mission and goals of NASA and/or are compensated by NASA (e.g., Federal civil servants, contractors, grantees, interns, etc.).

Physical Access - Access to federally controlled facilities.

Position Designation - The assessment of the potential for adverse impact on the efficiency and integrity of the service and the degree to which, by the nature of the position, the occupant could bring about a material adverse effect on the national security.

Position Risk – The designation of the level of risk associated with a position based on the potential impact to the efficiency or integrity of the service and its effect on the Agency or on the Agency’s mission.

Position Sensitivity - The designation of the level of risk associated with a position based on the actual or potential access to CNSI and the degree of damage an individual in the position could affect national security.

Public Trust Position - Position at the high-risk or moderate-risk level would normally be designated as public trust positions. Such positions may involve policy making, major program responsibility, public safety and health, law enforcement duties, fiduciary responsibilities or other duties demanding a significant degree of public trust, and positions involving access to or operation or control of financial records with a significant risk for causing damage or realizing personal gain.

Reciprocity - The acceptance of an existing investigation and adjudicative decision, made by another Federal agency, to establish suitability, fitness, or eligibility.

Revocation - The removal of an individual’s eligibility for access to CNSI and/or to hold a sensitive position based upon an adjudication that continued access poses an undue risk.

Risk Acceptance - An official acknowledgement by management officials that they accept the risk posed by not implementing a recommendation, or requirement, designed to reduce or mitigate a risk.

Risk Assessment - The process of identifying internal and external threats and vulnerabilities, identifying the likelihood of an event arising from such threats or vulnerabilities, defining the critical functions necessary to continue an organization’s operations, defining the controls in place or necessary to reduce exposure, and evaluating the cost for such controls.

Risk Management - A means whereby NASA management implements select measures designed to reduce or mitigate known risks.

Security Violation - An act or action by an individual or individuals that is in conflict with NASA security policy or procedure, such as a loss of CNSI, refusal to properly display NASA photo identification, violation of escort policy, or security area violations. This does not include incidents of theft, assault, and other related criminal activity.

Senior Management Official - Agency or Center management personnel at Division Chief or higher level.

Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) - Classification level denoting information, generally intelligence related, requiring security eligibility and physical/procedural security measures above those established for collateral CNSI or Special Access Program (SAP) information.

Sensitive Positions - Positions that have the potential to cause damage to national security. These positions require access to CNSI and are designated by the level of potential damage to national security:

a. Confidential - Information, the unauthorized disclosure of which reasonably could be expected to cause damage to national security.

b. Secret - Information, the unauthorized disclosure of which reasonably could be expected to cause serious damage to national security.

c. Top Secret - Information, the unauthorized disclosure of which reasonably could be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to national security.

Special Access Program (SAP) - Any program established and approved under E.O. 12958 that imposes need-to-know or access controls beyond those normally required for access to collateral Confidential, Secret, or Top Secret information.

Suitability - An assessment of an individual’s character or conduct that may have an impact on promoting the efficiency and integrity of the Federal service.

Suspension - The temporary removal of an individual’s access to CNSI.

Trusted Information Provider - An authorized individual working for or on behalf of the Government who may contact references or otherwise corroborates or verifies subject data, such as citizenship, education, and former employment. These individuals may include Government and contract employees or military personnel working in human resources or security offices, or equivalent organizations.

Unauthorized Disclosure - A communication or physical transfer of CNSI to a recipient who does not have the required credentials for access.

Verification - Validating at the actual source (an individual or place of record - such as employers, courts, law enforcement agencies - or their authorized repositories) the correctness and accuracy of information listed in the investigative questionnaire system of record or provided by the subject or references to the trusted information provider.

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