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January 13, 2017


By John Rutherford | Harkcon's Facility Security Officer 

Many Facility Security Officers (FSO) unnecessarily dread Defense Security Service (DSS) vulnerability assessments. Yes, preparing for an assessment is a lot of work, and yes, there is the possibility that you’re Industrial Security Representative (ISR) may find a vulnerability that reflects poorly on your facility. However, when viewed correctly, vulnerability assessments can be a valuable tool in helping a cleared company establish and maintain a high-quality security program with the objective of protecting classified information, people, and resources.

The DSS conducts vulnerability assessments every 12 to 18 months in accordance with NISPOM paragraph 1-207, Security Reviews. The focus of the assessment is to ensure that your facility is compliant with NISPOM requirements such as Foreign Ownership, Control, and  Interest (FOCI), Key Management Personnel, procedures for safeguarding classified information, reporting proce...

October 18, 2016

By John Rutherford | Harkcon's Facility Security Officer 


The first step to doing work for the Federal Government is to complete the necessary GSA registration and other basic administrative work. Once this is done, finding opportunities, submitting proposals, and winning government business is a much more defined path than winning business in the private sector. However, if a company is interested in doing cleared work with the Federal Government, it must complete another step and obtain a Department of Defense (DoD) Facility Clearance (FCL).  


Does a Small Business Need a FCL to Do Business with the Federal Government?

It is not necessary to have a FCL to do business with the Federal Government. However, a FCL is necessary for companies that would like to compete for contracts that require security clearances (i.e., Top Secret, Secret, Confidential clearances) in order to access and create classified information. The ability to do cleared work can open up access to a lot o...

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