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NCISS COde of ethics



The National Council of Investigation & Security Services has adopted a Code of Ethics and Professional Standards to be adhered to by its regular members and our leadership. In addition, these ethics are set as a standard bearer for the investigative and security industry. These principals will guide the association in accountability and expectations amongst its members, the profession and leadership.  NCISS members should be mindful of their responsibilities in their respective capacities to represent the association and their profession when they fulfill their duties as they serve their individual clients and as they collectively represent their profession.  NCISS members are expected to be the standard for quality and professionalism. Further, NCISS members are to treat all others respectfully, professionally, and above reproach.

Members of NCISS are encouraged to participate in ongoing professional development and continuing education to maintain their competency.

Officers, Board Members and Committee Members are expected to be informed and appraised of the association’s mission, services, and policies. Officers, Board Members and Committee Members shall meaningfully participate in the positions to which they were elected, appointed, or volunteered.

Client-Member Relationship.

Rule 1.01        Competent and Diligent Representation. 
A member shall be competent and diligent in any matter for which they provide professional services in accordance with local, state, and federal law.  It is a member’s responsibility to maintain the competency in the locales in which they provide services or to obtain such competency in the service of their client.

Rule 1.02        Client – Member Relationship.
 A member’s relationship to their client is sacrosanct. As such, a member shall observe, and adhere to the principles of honesty, integrity, and truthfulness in representations and dealings with her client. A member shall honor each client contract, adhering to all responsibilities by providing ethical services within the limits of the law.

Rule 1.03        Client Confidentiality. 
A member shall safeguard client confidential information and exercise the utmost care to prevent any unauthorized disclosure of such information. However, a member may reveal confidential information when expressly authorized to do so; as necessary to carry out the services of the client; in establishing a claim or defense when in a dispute with the client or, in accordance with law or court order.

Rule 1.04
        Future Criminal or Fraudulent Act. A member shall reveal confidential information when it is clear that a client is likely to commit a criminal or fraudulent act that is likely to result in death or substantial bodily harm to a person. The member shall reveal the information necessary to the client’s legal representative and, if necessary, to appropriate authorities. The member shall counsel the client to avoid the commission of such an act.

Rule 1.05        Conflict of Interest. A member shall not represent opposing parties to the same litigation. A member shall not offer services to a person if the representation of that person is materially and substantially adverse to the interests of another client, unless both parties consent to the representation.


Member’s Relationship to Others.

Rule 2.01        Truth in Advertising. 
A member shall refrain from improper and unethical solicitation of business; including false or misleading claims or advertising.  In addition, a member will not advertise their work, skill or merit in an unprofessional manner or in a dramatic, misleading or exaggerated manner. 

Rule 2.02
        Member Employee, Subcontractor’s and Subordinate. A member shall use due diligence to ensure that all representatives under their control, including their employees, co-workers, and subcontractors adhere to this same code of ethical conduct.

Rule 2.03        Unlawful Activity. 
A member will not knowingly violate any law, right or privilege of any individual citizen which may be guaranteed or provided by the United States Constitution, any State constitution, or the laws of the State and Federal Governments or any subdivision thereof.

Rule 2.04        Locate of Individuals. 
A member shall, prior to providing a person any personally identifying or location information of an individual, conduct appropriate due diligence to ensure that the person has a legitimate business or legal interest in obtaining that information. When such due diligence is not possible or appropriate, or if the person appears to not have a legal or business interest, the person shall be informed that their contact information will be provided to the subject they are seeking and the personal identifying information of the subject they are seeking will only be provided to the person if that party consents.

Rule 2.05
        Personally Identifiable Information of Others. A member shall, prior to obtaining personally identifiable information of another individual, conduct appropriate due diligence to ensure the person has a legitimate or legal interest in obtaining the information requested.  If no legitimate or legal reason is provided or the request is unreasonable through due diligence, a member will NOT conduct services.

Member’s Relationship to the Profession.

Rule 3.01
        Respect of the Profession and Membership. A member shall never knowingly, without just cause, harm or defame the professional reputation or practice of colleagues, clients, employers, or any member of NCISS.  In addition, a member will avoid all conduct or actions likely to discredit or do injury to the dignity and honor of the profession.

Rule 3.02        Membership Application. 
A member shall not obtain admission to membership by means of fraud, omission, misstatement or other irregularity. A member shall notify the Association immediately regarding a person, including himself, who has obtained membership by means of fraud, omission, misstatement or other irregularity.

Rule 3.03        Enforcement of Code. 
A member may be subject to disciplinary action, including censure, reprimand, suspension or expulsion from membership, for any offense which constitutes a breach of this code. A member shall cooperate in any procedure used to determine the validity and / or consequence of a complaint.

Rule 3.04        Disciplinary Procedure
. As described in Article XII, Section 16.01 of the Bylaws, an individual may submit a complaint to the then sitting Chairman of the Board, or the President. A non-member’s complaint shall be first adjudicated, to the degree possible, by the regulatory body or courts in the appropriate jurisdiction. The Committee may waive this rule upon a 2/3rds vote. The Chairman of the Board or the President, may refer the natter to the Ethics Committee Chair for an investigation and recommendation regarding the validity of the complaint and, if necessary, proposed disciplinary measures.  The Ethics Committee Chair shall be a past NCISS President.  Upon referral, the Ethics Committee Chair shall establish an odd numbered panel of at least three members.  The panel shall include a diverse panel of past and present board members.  Once empaneled, the Committee shall notify the accused member of the allegation within 10 days. The accused member shall then respond in writing to the complaint within 20 days.  The Committee may, with proper notice, hold any hearing, suspend any time deadline, or consider other written material as necessary by majority vote.  After its investigation, the Committee shall return to the Board by majority vote its recommendation and findings regarding the substance of the complaint and, if necessary, proposed disciplinary action.  The Chairman of the Board shall then place the matter on the next scheduled Board Meeting for resolution to accept, deny or modify the recommendations. 

Amended - May, 2021