An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Visitor Control Center (VCC)

The NSA Bethesda VCC is located at:
102 Wood Road, Bethesda, MD 20889

Open: Monday to Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Phone: 301-295-4607

ATTENTION: All first time visitors without existing access to the installation must complete and submit SECVNAV FORM 5512/1.
Download it here.

ID CARDS:  If you're going to the DEERS/ID Card office for a Common Access Card (CAC), please click here for information about obtaining access to the installation. 

NOTICE: 07AUG23: Effective August 31, 2023, the DoD Civil Service Retiree ID Card program is discontinued. For more information on how this may impact your visit to NSA Bethesda, please visit our FAQ below.



Personnel escorting visitors and guests are responsible for knowing and adhering to all information below.

1.) Personnel with the following IDs may escort visitors & guests onto the installation:

- Military or Civil Service CAC issued by DoD
- Military Retirees
- Military Dependents
- Reserve Component Members
- NSA Bethesda-issued Access Credential that specifies escort privileges

2.) Escorts must remain with their guest/visitor at all times, unless the individual retrieves their own valid ID or are passed off to another valid ID holder.

*** OR ***


Pre-vetted Access List


For your visitor or guests name(s) to be placed on a pre-vetted access list at the gates, you may submit an *ENCRYPTED* email at least (3) business days in advance (Monday through Friday, excluding Federal holidays) to:

In the email subject line, specific "Access Request: Pre-Vetted Access". Include a completed SECNAV 5512/1 and the following required information:

- Requested date(s) of access
- Visitor/Guest name (LAST, FIRST as it appears on their driver's license or government-issued ID)
- Company/Employer (If the guest is visiting on official business) or "N/A"
- Destination on NSA Bethesda
- Sponsor's name (LAST, FIRST)
- Sponsor's desk telephone number

Alternatively, a SECNAV 5512/1 may be hand-delivered to the Visitor Control Center, or faxed to 301-295-6321. There are no exceptions to this deadline due to the large volume of requests that must be vetted. The "pre-vetted access list" is printed the afternoon prior and placed at the gates at 5 a.m. NOTE: If your visitors/guests will be arriving prior to 5 a.m., please request access for both the day prior AND the day of the visit.

Pick Up a Pass

If you are unable to meet the deadline of (3) day business days prior to the visit, submit an email to:

In the email subject line, specify "Access Request: Pick-up a pass",  and  include a completed SECNAV 5512/1 and following required information:

- Requested date(s) of access
- Visitor/Guest name (LAST, FIRST as it appears on their driver's license or government-issued ID)
- Company/Employer (If the guest is visiting on official business) or "N/A"
- Destination on NSA Bethesda
- Sponsor's name (LAST, FIRST)
- Sponsors desk telephone number

Please have your visitor report to the Visitor Control Center at least one hour prior to their visit with two or more forms of valid ID as listed on form 5512/1.

Updated: January 11, 2023

DEERS/ID Card Office Access

Visitors and employees without regular access to NSA Bethesda who are looking to access the installation for walk-in service at the DEERS/ID Card office must have a sponsor or escort (as shown above) to obtain a pass for access to the installation.

Visitors and employees without regular access to the installation who have an existing appointment at the DEERS/ID Card office must present a screenshot or printout confirming their appointment date/time to obtain a pass for access to the installation.

Back to Top


DoD Civil Service Retiree ID Card Cancellation: The Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness has cancelled Department of Defense (DoD) civil service retiree identification card program. All existing cards expire no later than August 31, 2023. As a result, federal civilian retirees wanting to access a Navy installation will be required to apply for a Defense Biometric Identifications Systems (DBIDS) ID card. Here's what you need to know:

A. Apply for a Defense Biometric Identifications Systems (DBIDS) ID access card at the NSA Bethesda Visitor Control Center (VCC). Eligible personnel must visit the VCC in person and bring proper identification as well as an SF-50 indicating retirement from civilian government service. For the background portion, complete the SECNAV Form 5512/1 and bring it to the VCC.

A. No, you will be able to present your DBIDS access card to the installation sentry to get onto base and use permitted MWR facilities.

A. Though DBIDS credentials can be authorized up to three years, NSA Bethesda's local DBIDS access policy is limited to 364 days. Credentials will need to be renewed on an annual basis.

A. An individual is required to have their DBIDS credential authorized at each installation they intend to access. The individual must go through the VCC prior to entering an installation for the first time. The background check portion of enrollment will have been completed at the first installation, and then establish identity and purpose for entering at each subsequent installation. Subject to the installation commanding officer’s discretion or policy, the VCC may now add access to that installation to the credential.

A. NSA Bethesda will continue to allow DoD Civilian Retirees to use MWR facilities on the installation. DBIDS credentials will be issued to eligible personnel with "MWR Facility Privileges" on the back in the "Remarks" box, and be assigned to the "Facility Use" (Yellow) category during enrollment. The limited use of MWR facilities by DoD civilian retirees remains at the discretion of the installation commander.

Back to Top



Google Translation Disclaimer

  • Google Translate, a third party service provided by Google, performs all translations directly and dynamically.
  • Commandant, Naval District Washington, has no control over the features, functions, or performance of the Google Translate service.
  • The automated translations should not be considered exact and should be used only as an approximation of the original English language content.
  • This service is meant solely for the assistance of limited English-speaking users of the website.
  • Commandant, Naval District Washington, does not warrant the accuracy, reliability, or timeliness of any information translated.
  • Some items cannot be translated, including but not limited to image buttons, drop down menus, graphics, photos, or portable document formats (pdfs).
  • Commandant, Naval District Washington, does not directly endorse Google Translate or imply that it is the only language translation solution available to users.
  • All site visitors may choose to use similar tools for their translation needs. Any individuals or parties that use Commandant, Naval District Washington, content in translated form, whether by Google Translate or by any other translation services, do so at their own risk.
  • IE users: Please note that Google Translate may not render correctly when using Internet Explorer. Users are advised to use MS Edge, Safari, Chrome, or Firefox browser to take full advantage of the Google Translate feature.
  • The official text of content on this site is the English version found on this website. If any questions arise related to the accuracy of the information contained in translated text, refer to the English version on this website, it is the official version.

Naval District Washington   |   1411 Parsons Ave SE Suite 200   |   Washington DC, 20374-5001
Official U.S. Navy Website