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Tel:      (202) 293-0534

McAdoo Gordon & Associates, P.C.

1140 19th Street, N.W.

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Washington, DC  20036

  • leslie mcadoo gordon

"What level of security clearance is a Public Trust clearance?"

Updated: Apr 6, 2019

"Public Trust" is NOT a security clearance. It is determination by the US Government that the person can have access to certain kinds of sensitive, but unclassified, government information.

This question comes up a lot because people are not clear about what the purpose of their Background Investigation is. Every Public Trust determination and every security clearance adjudication requires you to have a Background Investigation. But not every Background Investigation is for security clearance. A Background Investigation can take many forms and involve many different kinds of investigative work, depending upon the decision that the US Government is using it to make. You should know exactly what clearance or access or determination you are applying for! If you don't, you should ask your Personnel Security Specialist or Facility Security Officer or Special Security Officer - the person who is working with you on getting your security paperwork completed.