Saturday, April 2, 2022

Three Ways FSOs can Impact the Cleared Defense Contractor


The Facility Security Officer’s (FSO) successful program depends on developing relationships with employees, managers and executives to facilitate execution of company policies, necessary security awareness training, willful employee self-admittance of security infractions or change of status, and proactive action toward expired, existing and future classified contracts. Any of the above mentioned success measures is difficult to obtain in a changing employee and contract environment, but is simplified through employee and executive buy-in.

How to do this:

The following 3 points pave the way for a successful security program.

1. Gain executive, manager and work force buy-in. This can be accomplished by first demonstrating a sound understanding of company mission, classified contract requirements and providing sound security policy. Cross cultural buy-in is critical for integrating the security plan into all business units and company operations.

2. Become the “go to” person for all new security challenges. The FSO doesn’t need to be involved in every decision made by cleared employees. However, if it involves a procedural change or the degradation in security, contacting the FSO should be an automatic response. Become recognized as not only and expert at NISPOM compliance, but a part of the team. This will help ensure that all units within an enterprise notify the FSO of any change in disposition of classified material storage. This integrated system will trigger the contracts, program manager, business development and other units to coordinate with the FSO and keep the FSO informed of expired, current, and future contract opportunities and responsibilities.

3. Create a budget based on mission and NISPOM compliance. An obviously important task is to direct the security program to protect classified information. But this is not to be assumed at all costs. Even NISPOM identifies the need to apply using economically feasible solutions. The FSO’s task should be to have an award winning program while supporting the company’s primary mission; to make money. The FSO owes allegiance to protecting nation’s secrets, but will not be able to do so if the company profits go straight into the security budget. Do this by becoming a good steward of company resources and develop policy that corresponds with the mission.

  1. More tips can be found in the book “How to Get U.S. Government Contracts and Classified Work

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 Jeffrey W. Bennett, ISP is the owner of Red Bike Publishing Red Bike Publishing . He regularly consults, presents security training, and recommends export compliance and intellectual property protection countermeasures. He is an accomplished writer of non-fiction books, novels and periodicals. Jeff is an expert in security and has written many security books including: "Insider's Guide to Security Clearances" and "How to Get U.S. Government Contracts and Classified Work", "ISP(R) and ISOC Master Exam Prep", and training:  NISPOM Fundamentals/FSO Training" and  Cleared Employee Training".Jeff is available to consult. Consulting Website"

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