"FOCI Mitigation Update: DSS Moves to a Risk-Based Approach and the NID Process Sees Incremental Improvement"

The process and agreements that the Department of Defense uses to mitigate foreign ownership, control or influence (“FOCI”) of U.S. government contractors have steadily evolved since Special Security Agreements (“SSA”) were introduced some thirty years ago.  Over the past few years, the Defense Security Service (“DSS”) has moved toward a more “risk-based approach” to mitigation, which recognizes that all contractors and countries are not alike. 

This Stroock Special Bulletin provides some detail about DSS’ risk-based approach to FOCI mitigation, as well as an overview of changes that are already trickling into the recently modified National Interest Determination (“NID”) process, which allows companies under SSAs to access highly classified information.