There are a number of internet rumors out there about security clearances above Top Secret. And they’re just that – rumors. There are three basic levels of security clearance – Confidential, Secret, and Top Secret. But within the government’s vast security program, there are a number of special access programs, security protocols – and obviously accompanying nicknames.

One of those is the Yankee White clearance. A yankee white clearance isn’t as much a separate background investigation as it is an administrative nickname for security clearances issued for specific offices serving the president and vice president. Think of it as a special suitability designation, rather than a separate security clearance.

If you need to obtain yankee white eligibility, expect an enhanced single scope background investigation, with more in-depth scrutiny and contact with your acquaintances, relatives, and people who have known you. The government wants to make sure anyone in close proximity to presidential secrets has full loyalty to the United States.

While you may find yourself with a yankee white, there’s no need to go posting it on your resume – what you really have is a TS/SCI security clearance – with some special yankee feathers in your cap.

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Lindy Kyzer is the director of content at Have a conference, tip, or story idea to share? Email Interested in writing for Learn more here.. @LindyKyzer