Do they still do polygraphs for pilots?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by AirForceProud, Aug 4, 2018.

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Do they polygraph test pilots?

  1. Yes

    3 vote(s)
    75.0%
  2. No

    1 vote(s)
    25.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. AirForceProud

    AirForceProud Member

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    I am currently trying to become a pilot, and I was very curious about the polygraph. By curious I mean losing my sleep. Please help
     
  2. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    Doesn’t sound like the start of a good story...
     
  3. USAFA10s

    USAFA10s USAFA Class of 2012 WPAFB 10-Year Member

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    Ummm, I’d say likely yes. Several types of clearances require a polygraph and while not all pilots would necessarily be flying missions needing that clearance, it’s a fairly safe bet that some airframes and missions will require a clearance that involves a polygraph. They aren’t particularly fun, but they are nothing to lose sleep over
     
  4. AirForceProud

    AirForceProud Member

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    But if you come up with a fail even though you answered truthfully, what happens then
     
  5. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator 10-Year Member

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    If for some reason you find yourself requiring a polygraph for a position in the military, or anywhere for that matter, unless its the result of a criminal investigation, the worst thing that happens is you don't get the job.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  6. Tex232

    Tex232 Member

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    No. The highest clearance needed by Air Force pilots (unless you are on special duty such as flying Air Force One, etc.) is a TS/SCI. A TS/SCI does not require a polygraph.
     
  7. AirForceProud

    AirForceProud Member

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    Are you sure? I've done so much research on ts sci clearance
     
  8. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    I held a TS/SCI for a decade without a poly. It isn’t a requirement. I had a lifestyle poly for a job years later and it was required as a part of the application. It sucked, but if you are honest it’s not a big deal. I don’t believe they do lifestyle polys to military. I could be wrong on that. The only polys I can remember my friends getting were nukes and they had a different poly (can’t remember and it was something like an anti-terrorism or something). Bottom line, be surprised if you had one. If you do, answer honestly. Trust me, they have heard it all.
     
  9. USAFA10s

    USAFA10s USAFA Class of 2012 WPAFB 10-Year Member

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    The one that I can see happening is a counterterrorism poly, and it is required for some of the extra letters that can be tacked on after ts/sci. I was super nervous and kept shifting. Ended up having to give up and come back after lunch because I was throwing the readings all over the place with my nerves. The guys asking the questions have seen it all. It’s really not anything to worry about, and it’s pretty unlikely you’ll need one, I’m just saying there are clearance categories that do require one
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2018
  10. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna 5-Year Member

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    You don't need a polygraph to get through UPT. All the posters who have said you may need one later on are correct (there are some optional USAFA programs that actually do require them), but simply to get a TS/SCI and a pilot slot/wings, it definitely isn't a requirement.
     
  11. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator 10-Year Member

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    As one poster said above, and I can state from past history...poly's for a pilot usually come when one has been selected for a position that requires "things" after the TS/SCI...

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  12. Tex232

    Tex232 Member

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    Yes, I have one.
     
  13. Humey

    Humey Member

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    My son is currently in UPT. Extensive background check but no polygraph
     
  14. Pima

    Pima 10-Year Member

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    In the 20+ yrs DH was ADAF as an F15E WSO, and now at the Pentagon working as a GS briefing Generals daily for fighter requirements he has never to my knowledge taken a poly. Remember TS clearances must be renewed every 5 yrs., IOWS 6 times.

    My DS is an ADAF pilot, and is up for his 2nd TS clearance since he is coming up on his 5 yr marker (done during his rising sr yr in AFROTC), and he too has not done a poly.

    Now, if it was me, I would think more about how the TS clearance works than the poly. The reason impo they don't need to do a poly is they can catch you way cheaper than the cost of a poly. The TS clearance requires you to fill out a questionnaire that is pages and pages long. It asks questions that are the same multiple times, but in a different way.
    ~ Not saying these are the questions, just giving an example of how they ask in a different way.
    ~~ Have you ever done illegal drugs? You answer No. A few pages later the question is have you smoked marijuana less than 3 times? You answer Yes. OOPS guess what now? Your two answers don't match up. You said no to illegal drugs, but marijuana until very recently has been illegal in every state, so now it is time to delve deeper.

    Additionally, for a TS clearance they will do an in person interview with your references(no family members) that you list utilizing a fed agent to do the interview. This interview is about 30 mins. long. They will ask them questions about you personally. Do they drink, if so, do you think they have a drinking problem? Have they ever had any law enforcement issues, if so what? So on and so forth. Thus, if now your TS clearance questionnaire does not match up to your reference's interview than they will delve deeper.
    ~ You say no to using marijuana throughout the questionnaire, but the reference says yes they did smoke in HS, than you got caught in a lie.

    Just saying, TS clearances are more complicated than you may think. Plus, they happen every 5 yrs. 5 yrs from now if your answers differ again than the red flag goes up.
    ~ You said on your 1st you never smoked marijuana. All goes well. 5 yrs ADAF and up for the 2nd this time you say YES. Now they have to figure out did you lie on the 1st one, or did you use marijuana since the last one.

    Sorry for the novella, but I think it is important to realize a poly, whether they give it or not, is not imho the thing to be concerned with when it comes to getting a TS.
     
    MSFaygo and StPaulDad like this.
  15. USAFA10s

    USAFA10s USAFA Class of 2012 WPAFB 10-Year Member

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    Very true. I just renewed mine and the interview lasted over 3 hours. Things get complicated when you have relatives with dual or foreign citizenship.
     
  16. Humey

    Humey Member

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    Very true. I just renewed mine and the interview lasted over 3 hours. Things get complicated when you have relatives with dual or foreign citizenship.

    My wife is Israeli and when my US born non military son went to Israel for Birthright (free trip to Israel) he had to fly in with an Israeli passport. All children of Israeli citizens are considered Israeli citizens by Israel. Fly into Israel without an Israel passport and you could get stuck for months waiting for them to issue you an Israeli passport. When my son had his clearence done, they referred to my other son as a foreign national when in reality he was born in the United States. I get that they also referred to my wife as a foreign national even though she also has US citizenship
     
  17. Pima

    Pima 10-Year Member

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    This goes off track a little bit more, but still, my favorite story.
    I was dating my DH in college, he was in MD, I was in Philly, never knew about TS clearances. Anyhoo, he stated in his interview that he was about to propose to me...yes, the AF knew before me! I go to class one day and my academic advisor asks to speak to me after my class. He tells me that a federal agent had contacted him to ask about me because of an AFROTC cadet named.... HUH?!?! I then talked to Bullet about this happening, he explained he told the agent he intended to marry me and that was why they contacted my advisor, in essence they checked into me too.

    We also have a friend that had the same thing, as Humey, but from France...back in the day of dual citizenship. It took him longer to get cleared because he had only revoked his French citizenship prior to going to OTS.

    TS clearances are very expensive and thorough. Think thousands of dollars. Although a poly is cheap, it is in my opinion not worth the time and money when you look at how deep they delve into your life.
     
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  18. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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