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article imageNSA leaks spur Senate hearing to examine security clearance

By Yukio Strachan     Jun 20, 2013 in Politics
Washington - Top Homeland Security officials will head to Capitol Hill on Thursday to testify at a Senate committee hearing about the security clearance process that allowed Edward Snowden access to the nation’s secrets.
The hearing, “Safeguarding Our Nation’s Secrets: Examining the Security Clearance Process,” starts at 1:30pm, according to an announcement from the group.
"The hearing will examine the management and oversight of the federal employees and contractors responsible for planning, conducting, and reviewing investigations and issuing security clearances," the press release said. "It will also examine the efficiency and effectiveness of the security clearance process."
To help accomplish this goal, the committee issued invitations for testimony to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management inspector general and an associate director of investigations for the agency, as well as to the head of the Defense Department’s defense security service and Deputy Director for the department, according to the Washington Post.
The announcement comes weeks after Britain's Guardian newspaper revealed Edward Snowden as the source of leaks about the National Security Agency’s surveillance program.
Snowden, 29, who fled to Hong Kong before, was a contractor for Booz Allen Hamilton working as a systems administrator at a National Security Agency facility in Hawaii.
As Reuters points out, the leaks have alarmed the U.S. intelligence community and have raised questions about whether the government is doing enough to vet individuals for security clearances.
For more information, read "Guide to the Security Clearance Process" here [pdf]
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