How to Obtain Security Clearance in the United Kingdom

Written by nigel ward | 13/05/2017
How to Obtain Security Clearance in the United Kingdom
U.K. airport staff need to pass security checks. (airport image by Photoeyes from

The levels of security clearance in the United Kingdom differ, depending on what type of job a person has applied for. An individual's criminal record is the most common type of security check in the U.K. This is done for people who have applied for and provisionally been accepted for posts with children or vulnerable people. Sensitive government posts require higher levels of clearance, such as "Developed Vetting, Security Check" and "Counter Terrorist Check." These clearances allow an individual to have access to sensitive security information. An employer will initiate the process after a provisional offer of employment has been made.

If you apply for jobs in the U.K. that require security clearance, you will need a U.K.-registered address. Live and support yourself in the U.K. by obtaining another job first before applying for a job requiring security clearance, if you have not already been offered a post. You will need to provide supporting documentation, such as U.K. electricity bills, gas bills and banks statements. Apply for jobs requiring security clearance only when you can provide such documentation.

An employer would not have considered you for a job requiring security clearance if he did not think you would get the clearance. Find out what security clearance you will need, and prepare all relevant documentation. Avoid being rejected for the job because of the time it will take for the authorities to complete your security check.

Accept the offer of employment and fill out the required security clearance forms.

Wait for the clearance to come through, then forward the documents to your employer. The time taken to do the security clearance depends on the level of clearance and your own history. Start your new position once the employer offers you employment.

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