HomeMission CentersCritical Technology ProtectionInternationalSecurity Assurances

Security Assurances for Cleared Individuals and Facilities

Limited Access Authorizations (LAA) for Non-U.S. Citizens

Non-U.S. citizens do not qualify for a security clearance. However, if a non-U.S. citizen requires access to U.S. classified information and meets the requirements of paragraph 2-209 and 2-210 of the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (NISPOM) and Industrial Security Letter (ISL) 2006-02, a Limited Access Authorization (LAA) no higher than the Secret level may be issued. Though, the LAA is not a national security eligibility (clearance). Access to classified information must be limited to the specific contract outlined in the LOJ. Access to classified information outside the scope of the approved LAA shall be considered a compromise of classified information. Access to classified information provided to the U.S. Government by another government or international organization will not be permitted under an LAA without the written consent of the government of the organization that provided the information.

If no U.S. classified access is needed but the subject requires area access, the request must be electronically submitted on the SF-85P Form to the appropriate GCA.

A Letter of Justification (LOJ) on Government Contracting Activity (GCA) letterhead and endorsed by the program executive officer or equivalent official responsible for the contract must be provided to DCSA.

The LOJ must contain the following information:

  1. The individual's name, date and place of birth, position title, and current citizenship.
  2. The compelling reason for not employing a cleared or clearable U.S. citizen.
  3. A statement of the unusual expertise possessed by the applicant.
  4. A statement that access will be limited to a specific government contract (specify the contract number).
  5. A list of the specific material to which access is proposed (delineate as precisely as possible and identify any other GCA that may have jurisdiction over any of the material, if applicable).
  6. The location of the classified material (security containers) in relationship to the location of the foreign national
  7. A plan to control access to secure areas and to classified and controlled unclassified information.
  8. A statement that the classified information to be accessed is approved for release to the person's country of citizenship.
  9. A synopsis of an annual continuing assessment program to evaluate the individual's continued trustworthiness and eligibility for access.

Prior to submitting an application for an LAA, the contractor must obtain a written disclosure determination from a principal or a designated disclosure official or obtain a State Department approved export license. The LAA cannot serve as an export authorization.

The LOJ must be sent to the DCSA along with proof of foreign citizenship (i.e. passport), copy of disclosure determination or export license, and foreign security clearance certificate (if available). Provide this information to DCSA via email at dcsa.iab@mail.mil. A copy of the approved Technology Control Plan (TCP) must be submitted to our office prior to the LAA being granted.

Upon notification from DCSA that the LOJ has been approved, the FSO will initiate an SF-86. The SF-86 should be electronically submitted as a Tier 5 investigation request for an LAA even though "Secret" is the highest level of access permitted. In addition, if the Subject has lived outside the U.S. within the past ten years, separate security forms for applicable countries may need to be completed as well.

The FSO shall notify DCSA if there are any changes to the Subject’s personnel security records, such as change in contract number, citizenship status, or any adverse information.

If you have any additional questions regarding LAAs, please contact the DCSA at dcsa.iab@mail.mil.

Reference: DoDM 5200.02 Procedures for the DoD Personnel Security Program
Reference: NISPOM 1-302. Reports to be submitted to the CSA
Reference: NISPOM 2-307 TCP
Reference: NISPOM 2-209. Non-U.S. Citizens
Reference: NISPOM 2-210. Access Limitations of an LAA


NATO Security Clearance Certificate (NSCC) Verifications for Foreign Nationals

Foreign Nationals employed by a U.S. cleared facility to perform on a NATO contract.
Access to NATO classified information may be permitted for citizens of NATO member nations, provided that NATO access is limited to performance on a specific contract, a NATO security clearance certificate is submitted to DCSA by their respective government and the facility security officer briefs the individual for NATO access. Prior to permitting a foreign national employee access to NATO classified information/materials, the subject’s clearance is required to be verified through government-to-government channels.

The NATO contracting authority must first provide a letter (known as the NATO Selection Letter, example below) confirming the requirement for the subject’s personnel security clearance. A NATO Selection Letter is required for each contract the subject is supporting. The NATO Selection Letter along with proof of foreign citizenship (i.e. passport), personnel security clearance template (template and instructions below), and foreign NATO security clearance certificate (if available), should be submitted to DCSA via email at dcsa.iab@mail.mil.

NATO Selection Letter Example
Personnel Security Clearance Information Sheet (PSCIS) Template
PSCIS Instructions

After DCSA receives the security assurance through government-to-government channels, the FSO will receive notification from DCSA. After obtaining verification of the subject’s security clearance, a visit request is required to be submitted for each of the required sites/establishments listed on the NATO Selection Letter.

NATO Access is limited to performance on the specific NATO contract listed in the NATO Selection Letter.

The FSO shall notify DCSA if there are any changes to the Subject’s personnel security records, such as change in contract number, employment status, and any adverse information.

Note: A consultant shall not be assigned outside the United States with responsibilities requiring access to classified information. The assignment of an employee who is a foreign national, including intending citizens, outside the United States on programs that will involve access to classified information is prohibited.

Reference: NISPOM 1-3-302. Reports to be submitted to the CSA
Reference: NISPOM 2-210f. NATO Information
Reference: NISPOM 10-501. International Visits
Reference: NISPOM 10-601. Access by Contractor Employees Assigned Outside the U.S.
Reference: NISPOM 10-707. Access to NATO Classified Information by Foreign Nationals


Facility Security Clearance (FSC) Verification Requests of a Foreign Company

There are circumstances when U.S. cleared industry, will require FSC verification for potential foreign subcontracting companies. This is typically the case for work performed within foreign countries. A FSC can be requested on the eligibility of a foreign facility to access/safeguard classified information in the performance of a program/contract. An export authorization must be issued prior to the negotiation or award of a contract. Classification guidance shall be issued in the form of security aspects letter/security requirements checklist. Foreign facilities fall under the national laws and regulations of the respective National Security Authority(NSA).

*All FSC verifications must be obtained through government-to-government channels.

To request FSC verification for a foreign company, DCSA requires that FSOs provide the following detailed information on the FSCIS Template:

  • Required Level of Facility Clearance
  • Full Facility Name
  • Full Facility Address
  • Mailing address if different from above
  • Security Contact Name
  • Reason for the request (must include: contract name/number, program/project)

Facility Security Clearance Information Sheet (FSCIS) Template
Submit FSC verification requests to dcsa.iab@mail.mil.


All FSC Verifications need to be Re-Verified annually (by the originating facility).

A facility is required to notify their DCSA, Industrial Security Representative of any pre-contract negotiation or award not placed through a GCA that involves or may involve—

  1. The release or disclosure of U.S. classified information to a foreign interest
  2. Access to classified information furnished by a foreign interest


Reference: NISPOM 1-302n. Foreign Classified Contracts


NATO Employee Visits to U.S. Sites

NATO visits are visits by personnel representing a NATO entity and relating to NATO contracts and programs. NATO visits are submitted and processed through the foreign visit system. U.S. Citizens employed by NATO can only access U.S. classified information that is releasable to NATO.

Reference: NISPOM 10-721. Visits


U.S. Citizens Directly Hired by NATO

U.S. citizens employed directly by NATO represent the interests of NATO. If access to U.S. classified information is required, such access shall be determined on the basis of need-to-know and to information previously authorized for release to NATO.

Reference: NISPOM 10-720. Release of U.S. Information to NATO