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How Contractors Obtain a GSA Access Card

The GSA Access Card serves as the identity badge for GSA employees and contractors. It uses smart card technology to provide reliable and secure identity verification.

GSA employees and contractors are required to use their GSA Access Card, along with a Personal Identification Number (PIN), to log into their computer and GSA networks, providing more secure and user-friendly access to information.

Step 1.  Complete the Contractor Information Worksheet (CIW).

Fill out the Contractor Information Worksheet (CIW) and submit it to the Requesting Official. The Requesting Official will set up an investigation request in the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Electronic Questionnaires for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) system to start the investigation. Examples of Requesting Officials include Contracting Officer’s Representatives (CORs), Contracting Officer’s Technical Representatives (COTRs), Project Managers, PBS Building Managers, and local Access Card Points of Contact(POCs). If you had a previous investigation, indicate that there was a previous investigation and provide the investigation date and the investigation Point of Contact (POC) in Section 1 of the CIW. The Requesting Official will facilitate the process and determine eligibility to skip any steps in the contractor credentialing process. The Requesting Official will also provide any additional forms that may be required.

Step 2.  Get Fingerprinted

The Requesting Official will direct you to the appropriate fingerprint service provider.

Bring one valid photo identification as shown in the list of acceptable identification (ID).

Step 3.  Complete the e-QIP Online Application.

GSA or Federal Protective Service (FPS) will email you detailed instructions on how to log into the secure Electronic Questionnaires for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) system and complete the SF85 - (PDF - 335KB) or SF85P - (PDF - 335KB) application. You should print a copy of your completed SF85 or SF85P for your records. Once the application is completed, you will be prompted to print the Signature Forms to release the e-QIP application, certifying that everything on your application is correct to the best of your knowledge.

Step 4.  Sign the e-QIP Signature Forms

After completing the e-QIP online application, sign the e-QIP Signature Forms and, if applicable, Optional Form (OF) 306 - (PDF - 375KB). Print, sign and make a copy of the forms for your records, and give the signed, hard copies to the Requesting Official.

Step 5.  Schedule an Enrollment Appointment.  

You will receive an email from asking you to schedule an enrollment appointment, or to inform you that enrollment is not required if you had previously enrolled with a another agency. Follow the email instructions to create a user account on the MSO scheduling website and schedule an appointment at an enrollment center. Save your user account information to schedule your GSA Access Card activation appointment at a later date. Contact your Access Card POC or RCO if you have any problem scheduling an enrollment appointment.

Step 6. Pick Up and Activate Your GSA Access Card.

Follow the instructions in the email from your Regional Credentialing Officer (RCO) or MSO to pick up and activate your GSA Access Card. Bring an acceptable ID and the temporary badge (if applicable) to pick up your GSA Access Card. Use the same username and password that you used to schedule the enrollment appointment on the MSO scheduling website to schedule the activation appointment. After activating your Access Card, you must connect your computer directly to the GSA network and perform a system reboot before using Virtual Private Network (VPN) remote access.

If you picked up and activated a replacement Access Card or updated the certificates on your Access Card:

  • After activating your replacement card or updating your card certificates, you must connect your computer from a GSA office directly to the GSA network and reboot your computer before gaining Virtual Private Network (VPN) remote access. Your new or updated card will not work with VPN unless you do this.
  • If you use your Access Card to log on to a GSA IT application, you may continue to use your current Access Card to log on to the application while your replacement card is produced. However, after you pick-up and activate your replacement card, it may take from 30 minutes to 2.5 hours before you can log on to the application with your new GSA Access Card. Similarly, it may take 30 minutes to 2.5 hours before you can log on to the application with your GSA Access Card after you’ve updated your card certificates.

How to Protect your Access Card


Questions about Access Cards for GSA staff or contract employees? Please contact:

personal credentials, ID, IDs, GSA Access cards, identity