The Pentagon has reportedly been appointed to oversee security checks at the US federal government.
All background investigations for military and civilian employees and contractors will consequently be done by the Defense Department, the Associated Press reported Sunday.
The responsibility for the checks will be transferred from the US Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to the Pentagon, a process currently underway that will take some three years to finish.
“Pentagon officials said that over the next three years, the Defense Department will take responsibility for all background investigations involving its military and civilian employees and contractors. But according to a US official, the White House is expected to soon give the department authority to conduct security reviews for nearly all other government agencies as well. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the decision before it was publicly announced,” read the report.
The White House is also expected to provide the Pentagon with the authority required to carry out security checks for all government agencies.
The move originates from weak points of the security system, exposed when a Navy contractor killed a dozen people at Washington’s Navy Yard in 2013.
It also aims to fix the dense backlog of people waiting for clearance.
One victim of the backlog was allegedly US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, who was not given permanent security clearance until 16 months after Trump took office.
Kushner’s large financial wealth was stated as one reason for the delay as it required more extensive review.