Thursday, February 4, 2010

When is accountability of classified information required in NISPOM?

The FSO designs a policy to maintain strict control over classified material. The NISPOM requires control of classified information at the TOP SECRET level. However, all material entering the facility, produced, reproduced or entering the facility in any fashion should be brought into possession for control, audit and inventory purposes. The NISPOM does address the cleared contractor responsibility of maintaining an information management system to protect and control classified information. This control and accountability facilitates visibility of the classified material and allows for preventative measures against unauthorized disclosure or identification of security violations.
Once the material is received and the delivery inspected against the receipt, the FSO or security specialist can input the information into the information management system or in other words, a retrievable database. This database can be something as simple as logging the information into a notebook or through technology such as software sold on the market. Some companies and federal agencies have developed internal forms and examples are available on the internet.
The FSO is charged with protecting classified material and an accountability record is an excellent tool for controlling classified information introduced into the company. With the accountability record, document disposition is annotated with additional receipting action. Some accountability records track document dispositions from inception to dissemination on the same record. Contractors are not limited to a certain method of document control other than the ability to track the status of classified information the cleared facility possesses.
The benefit of creating a database using any of the input (title, document number, contract number, reception date, and etc) is great. The database will facilitate retrieving the classified material and be able to produce documentation and classified information within a reasonable amount of time as required by NISPOM. The use of a database to meet the information management system aids in tracking classified information offering increased protection and accountability.
An information management system can help facilitate an annual inventory of all levels of classified information. Because of the positive identification and control involved, inventories aid in the protection of classified information. If during the course of a normal inventory, a document is not readily found, a more thorough search takes place. Any part of the information management system record is part of a growing data warehouse that may prove beneficial in finding the misplaced product.

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