23 June 2014


The Canberra Times, drawing on figures from Australian Government Security Vetting Agency (AGSVA), reports that "Almost all federal government staff, even those in menial jobs, are now security vetted, a costly requirement once reserved for a select few".

Supposedly some 350,000 people have an active Commonwealth security clearance, including public servants, defence personnel and contractors that range from plumbers to the Parks Australia taxonomy adviser in Kakadu National Park.

The CT claims that as of May 2013 there were
  • 9,806 active security clearances with 'positive vetting' (access to the most sensitive information), 
  • 31,199 with 'Negative vetting 2' (formerly top secret), 
  • 124,569 with 'Negative vetting 1' (highly protected, secret) and 
  • 181,305 with 'Baseline' (confidential, restricted and protected).
ANAO criticisms of AGSVA performance are noted here.