For defense contractors, a Facility Security Officer (FSO) is a crucial position for establishing and maintaining a facility clearance (FCL) and the associated programs/requirements.

Facilities or Entities that are going through the process of obtaining and facility clearance (FCL) through the Defense Counterintelligence Security Agency (DCSA) should have a FSO in place as part of the Key Management Personnel for the facility. The FSO is responsible for working with the government agency Industrial Security team and/or other contractor facilities FSO to ensure the FCL request documents are properly submitted for FCL sponsorship. The FSO is also responsible for working with the DCSA Facility Clearance Branch (FCB) to provide them with additional information needed to support the sponsorship of the FCL.

The FSO acts as the liaison between the defense contractor and the U.S. government security agency that the company is contracted with. The 32 CFR Part 117, National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (NISPOM) serves as an FSO’s “bible” on industrial security processes and guides them on how to carry out their responsibilities.