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Requesting Background Investigation Records


The DCSA Freedom of Information and Privacy (FOI/P) Office for Investigations supports the collection, dissemination, and re-dissemination of information gathered during the investigative process in accordance with the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended.

The primary duties of the FOI/P Office for Investigations include:

  • release of investigative information to the general public, and to subjects of investigation and/or their designated representative
  • review and respond to requests for amendment of investigative files
  • release of investigative files to law enforcement or counterintelligence investigative entities
  • release of investigative files to parties involved in administrative proceedings or hearings

The DCSA maintains a record of all background investigation information in the Personnel Vetting Records system of records, DUSDI 02-DoD, as published in the Federal Register. This includes all background investigation records, previously controlled by the OPM National Background Investigations Bureau and covered under the OPM Central 9 systems notice. Effective October 1, 2019, those records were transferred to the DCSA.

Requesting Your Own Records

Obtaining a Copy of a Previously Completed SF/eQIP Form

If you have already filled out an investigative form in e-QIP prior to October 2019, it is likely that your information is available for you to review while filling out your next investigative questionnaire. Before contacting the FOI/P Office for Investigations, determine if your local human resources or security office can give you access to log back into the e-QIP system and retrieve your form. Your local security or human resources office may be the individual that sent you the email requesting you to fill out your next investigative questionnaire.

If your agency doesn’t have this ability, follow the directions below on how to request a copy of your background investigation.

Obtaining a Copy of My Background Investigation Records

To request a copy of your own background investigation you should submit a request to the FOI/P Office for Investigations. You may use the INV100, Freedom of Information / Privacy Act Records Request for Background Investigations, form or submit a handwritten request.

The INV100 is specific to DCSA (and its predecessor the National Background Investigation Bureau). Although use of this form is not mandatory, we encourage you to utilize it when making a request. Providing all the information requested on the INV100 will help complete your request in a timely manner and ensure that it is not returned for additional information.

Alternatively, if you wish to submit a handwritten request, your request must include the following information:

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Full social security number
  • Mailing address and email address if you'd like your material returned electronically
  • Any available information regarding the type of record involved
  • Photocopies of two different identity source documents. Examples of acceptable identity source documents are noted on the FOI/P Program Overview page.
  • An original notarized statement or an unsworn declaration in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that theforegoing is true and correct. Executed on (date). (Handwritten Signature).

Requests can be sent to the FOI/P Office for Investigations via the methods listed below:

  • Mail:

    Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency
    ATTN: FOI/P Office for Investigations
    PO Box 618
    Boyers, PA 16018

Note: For deliveries requiring a street address use: 1137 Branchton Road; Boyers, PA 16018

You may submit your request and identity source documents as scanned attachments to an email. Prior to sending, please ensure the security of your e-mail system is adequate for transmitting sensitive, personally identifiable information (e.g., full name, social security number, date of birth, etc.).

  • Fax: (724) 794-4590 (advisement: this is an unclassified fax number)

Access by the Representative of the Data Subject

A request for records from a representative of a data subject may be submitted on the INV100, or submitted as a written request. If submitted as a written request, the following must be included:

  • Designation of the third party / representative, which includes the name and mailing address of the representative / third party to whom the data subject permits DCSA to release his/her record.
  • Specific authorization from the data subject indicating the FOI/P Office for Investigations may release their records to the designee.
  • Specific identification of the records the FOI/P Office for Investigations may release to the designee.

The written authorization must include an original notarized statement or an unsworn declaration, from the data subject, in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on (date). (Signature).

The written request must include the following about the data subject:

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Full social security number
  • Photocopies of two different identity source documents. Examples of acceptable identity source documents are noted on the FOI/P Program Overview page.

Appealing Access Denials

Requesters have the right to appeal DCSA’s access decision. An appeal must be received by DCSA within ninety (90) calendar days from the date of the final response letter. The appeal should include: (1) the reason(s) the requested information should be released, (2) an explanation why the agency response may have been in error, (3) a copy of the original request, (4) a copy of the final response letter, and (5) a reference to the tracking number provided in the final response letter.

Appeals may be submitted in writing to the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency, ATTN: Office of General Counsel, 27130 Telegraph Road, Quantico, VA 22134. Clearly mark the outside of the envelope and your written appeal letter: “Privacy/FOIA Appeal”.

Appeals may also be submitted via e-mail to dcsa.quantico.dcsa-hq.mbx.foia@mail.mil. Prior to sending, please ensure the security of your e-mail system is adequate for transmitting sensitive, personally identifiable information (full name, social security number, date of birth, etc.).

The appellant will be notified of the decision on their appeal in writing. If the decision affirms the adverse determination in whole or in part, the notification will include a brief statement of the reason(s) for the affirmation, including any exemptions applied, and will inform the appellant of the Privacy Act provisions for judicial review of the appellate authority's decision. Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. §552a(g)(1) and 32 CFR 310.6(b) appellants may seek judicial review for any negative determinations in the District Court of the United States in the district: (1) in which they reside; (2) in which they maintain their principal place of business; (3) where the disputed agency records are maintained; or (4) in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

If the adverse determination is reversed or modified, in whole or in part, the appellant will be notified in writing of this decision and the request will be reprocessed in accordance with that appeal decision.

Requests for Records under a Privacy Act Condition of Disclosure or Routine Use

Background investigation records are Privacy Act protected records. Without the subject’s consent, these records can only be disclosed when one or more of the twelve Privacy Act Conditions of Disclosure apply; and one such condition includes the routine uses of the systems notice for the records.

These requests should be sent to the DCSA FOI/P Office for Investigations via one of the below methods:

The request may be submitted as a scanned attachment to an email.

Prior to sending, please ensure the security of your e-mail system is adequate for transmitting sensitive, personally identifiable information (full name, social security number, date of birth, etc.).

  • Mail:

     

    Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency
    FOI/P Office for Investigations
    Attention: Supervisory FOI/P Specialist
    PO Box 618
    Boyers, PA 16018

    Note: For deliveries requiring a street address use: 1137 Branchton Road, Boyers, PA 16018

  • Fax: (724) 794-4590 (advisement: this is an unclassified fax number)

Requests for Records for Civil or Criminal Law Enforcement Activities, to include Counterintelligence Investigations

Privacy Act Condition of Disclosure (b)(7) states: "No agency shall disclose any record which is contained in a system of records by any means of communication to any person, or to another agency, except pursuant to a written request by, or with the prior written consent of, the individual to whom the record pertains, unless disclosure of the record would be to another agency or to an instrumentality of any governmental jurisdiction within or under the control of the United States for a civil or criminal law enforcement activity if the activity is authorized by law, and if the head of the agency or instrumentality has made a written request to the agency which maintains the record specifying the particular portion desired and the law enforcement activity for which the record is sought.“

If an agency requests records under subsection (b)(7), a formal request must be submitted. The following is required for a (b)(7) request:

  • The request must be in writing, on agency letterhead. It is helpful to have the name and contact information for an agency POC in the event we have questions about your request.
  • The request must be submitted by the agency head or the head of the office/instrumentality making the request; or by another senior official with evidence that the request function has been delegated (not by the individual agent).
  • The request must specifically outline the type of information sought (e.g., background investigation records, standard forms, etc.).
  • An explanation must be provided about why the information is needed (e.g., the information is needed in connection with an ongoing criminal investigation). The subject’s full name and all available subject identifiers should be provided.
  • If your agency’s investigation is being jointly conducted with another government agency, please provide the name of that agency as well as the name of and contact information for a POC at that agency with whom you are working.

Requests for other purposes, such as EEO investigations and hearings, employee relations, research, unemployment compensation matters, etc.

Official requests should be submitted on agency letterhead. The request should outline the specific purpose for which the records are sought, a clear identification of the records needed (e.g., background investigations, standard forms, etc.), and include as much identifying information about the subject as possible. An agency POC and contact information should also be provided in the event we have questions about the request.

Litigation Requests or Demands for Investigative Records or the Testimony of DCSA personnel as witnesses:

Requests related to litigation or demands for background investigation records or the testimony of DCSA personnel, will be coordinated with the DCSA General Counsel, per section F(1) of Department of Defense Directive 5405.2.

A demand is defined as a “subpoena, order, or other demand of a court of competent jurisdiction, or other specific authority for the production, disclosure, or release of official DoD information or for the appearance and testimony of DoD personnel as witnesses.”

Litigation is defined as “all pretrial, trial, and post-trial stages of all existing or reasonably anticipated judicial or administrative actions, hearings, investigations, or similar proceedings before civilian courts, commissions, boards (including the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals), or other tribunals, foreign and domestic.” This term includes responses to discovery requests, depositions, and other pretrial proceedings, as well as responses to formal or informal requests by attorneys or others in situations involving litigation.

Customer Agency Use & Retention of Investigations

If you are a Customer Agency and have questions about requesting a previously completed background investigation for pre-placement/adjudication purposes, detailed information is outlined on the DCSA Personnel Vetting website: https://www.dcsa.mil/mc/pv/gov_hr_security/requesting_files/

If you are a Customer Agency and have questions regarding retention of background investigations, detailed information is outlined on the DCSA Personnel Vetting website: https://www.dcsa.mil/mc/pv/gov_hr_security/agency_use/

If you are a Customer Agency and have questions regarding within agency sharing or external dissemination of background investigations, detailed information is outlined on the DCSA Personnel Vetting website: https://www.dcsa.mil/mc/pv/gov_hr_security/agency_use/