Defence Construction Canada (DCC) has updated the Advance Procurement Notice (NPP) for Solicitation № WA-NCR-2016-20 for construction programs for fiscal years 17/18 through to 19/20.
RELIABILITY or SECRET personnel and facility clearances will be required for all projects. Potential bidders who do not currently meet these requirements can apply to the Industrial Security Program (ISP) for clearances. DCC is an approved sponsor under the ISP.
The Government of Canada has recently awarded a services contract to modernize the ISP, transforming the current paper-based operations to a "single self-service electronic interface" in order to meet the increasing volume of security clearance requests and improve user access and experience.
Government of Canada information is subject to data and information protection requirements. The ISP is responsible for granting the necessary security clearances to contractors and their subcontractors for access to Government of Canada information designated as PROTECTED or higher. Key requirements include:
- individual and facility security clearances must be received in advance of any access to government information;
- individual and facility security clearance must match the level of security assigned to the information being accessed;
- security clearances cannot be extended, transferred, or assigned between organizations;
- site-specific Document Safeguarding Capability (DSC) security clearance is required for organizations that handle government information or assets at their facilities;
- IT systems that will receive, store, and process government information must be approved in advance;
- foreign-based employees accessing government information at Canadian facilities must obtain a visitor screening approval in advance;
- foreign-based employees accessing government information from locations outside of Canada require security clearances, as does the facility within which they are working;
- subcontractors who will receive, process, store or access government information are subject to all of the same assessments and requirements as are the prime contractors (those holding the contract with the Canadian government) and must possess a valid security clearance for each contract; and
- prime contractors remains solely responsible (and liable) for the subcontractors compliance with the ISP
Compliance with the ISP is a material requirement for any government contract having a security requirement. Failure to comply with the ISP can result in suspension or termination of security clearances. The termination of security clearances is considered to be a breach of contract, which entitles the government to terminate the contract for default.
With the increasing attention being paid to cybersecurity and data protection, companies will find they are now subject to more stringent security requirements. Whether you are currently registered in the ISP or seeking to do so, understanding the requirements of the ISP is critical to your ability to successfully bid for federal government work.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.