Designation of Sensitive and Public Trust Positions
Every DoD position is assigned a sensitivity or public trust designation based
on the criterion that best describes the main duties of the job. Position
sensitivity and public trust is assigned based on the work that is assigned to
the organization and incumbent and focuses on the impact to the DoD mission and
Within the Department of Defense (DoD), each civilian position is
categorized with respect to security into one of five groups:
SS positions involve the following:
- Special Sensitive (SS)
- Critical Sensitive (CS)
- Non-Critical Sensitive (NCS)
- Non-Sensitive (NS)
- Public Trust (PT)
Generally, CS positions involve the following:
- Access to SCI information
- Access to unique or uniquely productive intelligence sources or methods
vital to the U.S. security
- Positions that could cause grave damage and/or compromise technologies,
plans, or procedures vital to the strategic advantage of the U.S.
NCS positions typically involve the following:
- Access to TOP SECRET information.
- Duties under special access programs.
- Information Technology.
NS positions fall under Human Resources, not Security.
- Access to SECRET or CONFIDENTIAL information.
- Information Technology (IT) II duties.
Remember: The sensitivity designation applies to the duties of the position, not
to the person occupying the position. A position can be sensitive without
requiring access to classified information.
Positions at the high or moderate risk levels would normally be designated as
“Public Trust” positions. Such positions may involve policy making, major
program responsibility, public safety and health, law enforcement duties,
fiduciary responsibilities, or other duties demanding a significant degree of
public trust; and positions involving access to or operation or control of
financial records, with a significant risk for causing damage or realizing
Sensitive duties are those duties which, although they do not include access
to classified information, if performed by an untrustworthy individual, could
cause harm to the national security. Some examples of sensitive duties include
access to restricted areas, access to sensitive DoD equipment, or information
technology (IT) positions where the individual works with unclassified automated
information systems. Positions involving sensitive duties, with no access to
classified information, are known as positions of trust.