Agencies must ensure New Zealand government employees, contractors and temporary staff who require ongoing access to New Zealand government information and resources:

  • are eligible to have access
  • have had their identity established
  • are suitable to have access, and
  • are willing to comply with government policies, standards, protocols and requirements that safeguard that agency’s resources (people, information and assets) from harm.

Agencies must have in place policies and procedures to assess and manage the ongoing suitability for employment of all staff and contractors.


Agencies must:

  • identify positions within their agency that require access to CONFIDENTIAL, SECRET and TOP SECRET assets and information
  • ensure the level of security clearance sought is necessary, and
  • ensure personnel have the requisite level of security clearance prior to being granted access to information protectively marked as CONFIDENTIAL or higher.


Agencies must maintain a register of personnel and contractors who hold a security clearance.


An application for a security clearance must be sponsored by a New Zealand government agency.


Agency heads must obtain a recommendation from the NZSIS prior to granting a security clearance. Agencies must follow the Protective Security Requirements Personnel Security Management Protocol and supporting requirements for personnel security.


Agencies must have personnel security clearance management arrangements in place for all staff, including contractors, who hold a security clearance.


Agencies must notify the NZSIS of the granting, downgrading, suspension or cancellation of a security clearance. Any reason associated with disciplinary action or unsuitability of the candidate to obtain/maintain the appropriate level of clearance must be reported to the NZSIS.