SF86 #19 - For someone who lived abroad

Hi there,

Thanks everyone for your support.

I’m invited to complete the SF86 for an OCONUS linguist job. Being someone who lived abroad for 13 years before moving to the US in 2014 and becoming a US citizen early 2019, it was natural that i had many (hundreds) of contacts with foreign nationals. All was smooth until i reached #19 Foreign Contacts.

The form says “Do you have or have you had close and/or continuing contact with foreign nationals within the last 7 years with whom you, your spouse, or your cohabitant are bound by affection, influence, and/or obligation? Include associates, as well as relatives…”

This was confusing to me because anyone who i knew (by affection or associates, work) say between 2012 and 2019, whether or not i have current contact with, still need to be listed as per the instructions.

My company however says don’t worry about the old contacts just list the ones you have current contact with, and purge your facebook friends, which shrinks the list considerably.

What should i do? As someone who lived abroad i’m bound to have a LOT of people i had close or continuing contact with. But as per company advice i was explained to only focus on the ones i currently have.

Please help me out with this as it can have a great impact on the amount of people to report.

Thank you!

Read the question literally. Keep in mind as a foreign born linguist your background is going to be scrubbed.

Don’t forget your unlisted relatives not listed elsewhere on the form. Answer all of the questions as thoroughly as possible. Just because you don’t have the answer off the top of your head, still try to get their birthdates/birth place, current residence, occupation/employer and report if they had any foreign gov’t (meaning Non-US) affiliations, such as, mandatory military service, current military service current/former diplomat, your wife’s cousin who is married to the head of state, etc.

Thank you BGInvestigator,

So there’s no need to purge social media if i still need to report old contacts correct?
I would like to reiterate that doing so i would have to fill in hundreds of those FNC forms. Some of whom i lost contact with years ago (again sponsor company says no need for those) and do not have their current info, and can’t get them without asking them which conflicts with another instruction that says not to.

I asked the company why are their instructions different than the form’s, they did not respond.

some agencies consider social media to be on going contact. If you don’t have contact with them in the last 7 years, purge them.

Yes, but even if i had contact with them on social media, if i’m not bound to them by affection, influence or obligation, just casual contact, social courtesy, flings etc. then they wouldn’t pass the criteria right?

no, you would need to report them - you just described continuing social contact.

This is not the place to try and juggle the words/instructions to meet your needs. “Yes, but…” is not acceptable mitigation. The security clearance process is not a game, let alone a game to be won. If you have continuing contact with non-US citizens in the last seven years, especially those whom you have casual contact, social courtesy, flings, etc, report them or be prepared for a clearance denial.

126 is the number of FNs who fall under your instructions. 41 is the number of FNs that need reporting according to my employer. I’m lost as to how to tackle this as it makes a huge difference in the number of forms i need to submit. They also told me that the more FNs i have the more likely i will be denied, based on experience. Go figure. I thank you BGInvestigator and appreciate your time in responding. I hope you understand the stress this is causing me as i’m trying to be thorough but also efficient without causing unnecessary alarm.

I agree that they should ask about ANY foreign nationals and not put caveats on it. I was overseas for almost 3 years so EVERYONE outside of the military that I knew was a foreign national. I just hope that the DoD doesn’t think I was trying to hide anything (hopefully the fact I passed 2 CI polys will help alleviate those concerns).

I lived abroad for 13 years. Practically everyone i knew was a foreigner. I’m getting the feeling now that the broad instructions on question 19 are designed on purpose to be flexible, for a case by case situation. For a US born citizen they want to see every foreign contact. For someone born, raised, worked abroad then got naturalized, it’s likely they assume a high number of foreign contacts, and perhaps are more interested in the most current close contacts. Again this is just me analyzing.