Obtain a security screening for your organization

Is your organization bidding on a Government of Canada or foreign government contract with security requirements? Whether a one-person consulting firm or a large corporation, your organization must be screened through Public Services and Procurement Canada’s (PSPC) Contract Security Program (CSP). This must happen before you start work on the contract, and sometimes before you bid.

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Types of organization security clearances

Screening process

  1. Getting sponsored

    To be registered and screened through the program, your organization must first be sponsored by a source approved by the Government of Canada.

    For more information consult the reference sheet: Get a sponsor.

  2. Getting registered

    The program will review the private sector organization screening form once completed by the approved source. If approved, the program will start the registration process.

    For more information consult the reference sheet: Register.

  3. Getting screened

    The program will contact your organization directly to initiate the screening process. You will be asked to:

    1. complete an application for registration. In the application you will provide:
      • information about your organization's structure, ownership and legal status
      • names of key senior officials:
        • a key senior official (KSO) is a senior member of your organization who influences your organization's policies or practices in the performance of protected and classified contracts, and may be an owner, officer, director, executive, partner or board member
        • if applying for a facility security clearance, you will need to determine which of your KSO will require clearance
    2. appoint a company security officer (CSO) and alternate company security officer (ACSO). If you are a sole proprietor or a consultant you will act as both a CSO and KSO:
    3. complete the required personnel security screening forms

    The program will assess the information provided before granting or denying a clearance. You will be contacted directly when the program has determined the results of your organization security screening.

Security agreement for organization clearance

During the registration process, you will complete a legal agreement between the organization and the Government of Canada that requires your organization to abide by the requirements of the Contract Security Manual.

Duration of the screening process

The screening process begins once the request for private sector organization screening form is accepted.

The length of the screening process depends on many factors, including completeness of forms and the complexity of the screening required.

Estimated timelines for organization screenings

  • Designated organization screening: up to 4 months
  • Facility security clearance: 6 months or more

Additional physical security clearances will add to these timeframes.

Contact the Contract Security Program if you have questions about the screening process.

Clearance validity period

Your clearance will continue to be valid as long as it is required and renewed.

Learn how and when to renew or upgrade your organization security clearance.

Maintain your organization security clearance

The information you supply to obtain your clearance must be kept up to date. If changes are not reported and not addressed, your organization clearance will no longer be in good standing, and this will impact your ability to bid on contracts. For example, you will be considered non-compliant if your CSO leaves and you do not appoint a replacement.

More information

How to obtain a clearance with the Contract Security Program webinar

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