The private contractor responsible for the security clearance screening of Edward Snowden – who later leaked classified documents to the media that revealed a secret surveillance program by the National Security Agency (NSA) – is under investigation by the federal government for allegedly conducting inadequate background checks, according to a report by The Charlotte Observer. The full story is available at

The Charlotte Observer reports that USIS – described in the story as “the largest commercial provider of background investigations to the federal government” – conducted a background check for Snowden in 2011 that gave him access to classified documents he later leaked to the media. Inspector General Patrick McFarland confirmed during the hearing of a Senate Homeland Security subcommittee that an investigation was underway and that “there may be some problems” with Snowden’s background check.

According to The Charlotte Observer report, McFarland testified that “at least 18 investigators have been convicted of fabricating background checks” since 2007, “casting doubt on hundreds of security clearances.” Approximately 75 percent of all background investigations done for the federal government are conducted by contractors. Overall, nearly 5 million people have been granted security clearances by the U.S government and 1.4 million have top-secret clearances, the Charlotte Observer reports.

On June 20, 2013, USIS released a statement on Senate Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing that stated in part: In the same Senate hearing, questions were raised as to whether USIS had conducted the initial background investigation, or a periodic reinvestigation, for the security clearance of Edward Snowden. USIS conducts thousands of background investigations annually for OPM (U.S. Office of Personnel Management) and other government agencies. These investigations are confidential and USIS does not comment on them.

Background checks used as part of a Safe Hiring Program can help ensure and safe and profitable workplace for employers, employees, and the general public. Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority®’ – is a nationwide screening provider based in the San Francisco area that is accredited by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®). For more information about background checks, call toll free 888.999.4474 or visit


About Employment Screening Resources® (ESR):

Founded by safe hiring expert Attorney Les Rosen in 1997, Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority®’– provides accurate and actionable information that empowers employers to make informed hiring decisions for the benefit of their organizations, employees, and the public. CEO Rosen literally wrote the book on background checks with “The Safe Hiring Manual” and ESR is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), a distinction held by a small percent of screening firms. Employers choosing ESR know they have selected an agency meeting the highest industry standards. To learn more about ESR, visit or call toll free 888.999.4474.

About ESR News: 

The Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) News blog – ESR News – provides employment screening information for employers, recruiters, and jobseekers on a variety of topics including credit reports, criminal records, data privacy, discrimination, E-Verify, jobs reports, legal updates, negligent hiring, workplace violence, and use of search engines and social network sites for background checks. For more information about ESR News or to send comments or questions, please email ESR News Editor Thomas Ahearn at [email protected]. To subscribe to the ESR News Blog Feed, visit To subscribe to the complimentary ESRcheck Report monthly newsletter, please visit


  1. Pingback: snuscore

Comments are closed.