BPSS checks

What does a BPSS check consist of?

BPSS security clearance checks are mandatory for all entry-level government positions and include:

  1. 5-year address history
  2. Basic DBS check – unspent criminal record check
  3. Identity – this also includes Sanctions, Politically Exposed Persons, HM Treasury and Specially Designated Nationals checks.
  4. 3-year Career History – including verifying any gaps in career history over 31 days.
  5. Right to work – we check the applicant has a valid proof of Right to Work in the UK.


Who needs a BPSS check and what does it provide access to?

BPSS stands for Baseline Personnel Security Standard and any individual with any access to government assets will need a BPSS check. This includes civil servants, members of the armed forces, temporary staff in government department and contractors. BPSS clearance:

  • allows access to UK OFFICIAL assets and occasional access to UK SECRET assets
  • is needed to work in areas where SECRET and TOP SECRET information may be overheard.
  • is for people who require access to the Public Services Network (PSN).
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Both the Cabinet Office and the Centre for Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) recognise the importance not only of security clearance checks, but also of enlisting an appropriate and properly accredited organisation to conduct it (especially if the correct types of checks cannot be conducted in-house).

CPNI have issued a best practice guide to security clearance screening which states that “Pre-employment screening is a fundamentally important element of any personnel security regime”.

It also goes on to say that, “The guide has been written for organisations that own or operate assets, services and systems which form part of the UK Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) and therefore have a responsibility for pre-employment screening.”

You can find out more about BPSS checks on .GOV.UK.

Sectors classed as part of the UK Critical Infrastructure:

  • Communications
  • Emergency services
  • Energy
  • Finance
  • Food
  • Government and public services
  • Health
  • Transport
  • Water

Staffvetting.com are NSI Gold accredited

As such, we are perfectly placed to implement BPSS checks for any size of organisation.  Contact our team today to discuss how we can help you.

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Advice for BPSS Applicants:

  • You, the Applicant (the person being screened) will be asked to sign a consent form giving us permission to view their documents and process them for the purpose of screening to the BPSS standard. This consent can be withdrawn at any point during the process by emailing us. If this happens, we will stop the screening and contact the Applicant’s sponsor (our client).
  • We will contact you directly if we need them to clarify anything at any point during the process, or if they need to provide more documents or alternative evidence.
  • We will ask you to provide a range of valid (in date) documents throughout the process. This is to evidence your name, address and career history e.g. passport, driving licence, birth certificate, payslips, benefits statements, bank statements, educational qualifications etc. We then use those documents to verify your identity using internal and third party systems.
  • You can see a list of acceptable documents for BPSS checks here. You should have your documents ready before you start to fill in you application form because this will reduce the chance of delays.
  • You may use your phone or tablet to take photos of their documents but the image must always be legible for it to be verified.
  • We make no judgments about your suitability for the role for which you are applying. That is the Client’s responsibility. The Client is the company or organisations paying for your screening.
  • We are required to follow the BPSS standard’s process and criteria with respect to how we carry out the checks and what evidence is acceptable to meet the standard. If you meet the criteria, you are deemed to have passed the BPSS screening.
  • No one contacted during the screening is legally obliged to respond to our requests to provide information in support of your application.
  • We also have a strict Mutual Respect Policy in place which seeks to treat everyone we work with, with kindness, dignity and respect.

*PAYE records are an excellent form of evidence – please download them for free here.

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