Anonymous User wrote:I know the sf-86 can ask for information as far as 7 or 10 years back...what happens when you literally can't find someone (outside of family members) to verify a period of residence or unemployment. Immediate ding or if you reasonably didn't know anyone it's not a huge red flag?
Its 7 years for a Secret (generally 5 years of which you must provide contacts) and 10 years for Top Secret. If they can't verify enough info, they will deny you. That's why you should never list the same person twice anywhere on the form. That way if they can't get ahold of one or two people, hopefully the adjudicator still feels like they have enough info. (This isn't required but is a very good idea to do.)
It's definitely a huge red flag to not be able to list a name though. I had dozens of my people get turned down for less than this. Start looking people up online. With some work, you can do it and they know that. In fact, I'm not sure it would even get passed the USAO's security manger to be turned into OPM with a blank...because it'll never get approved and that prohibits them from issuing an interim clearance under OPM guidelines.
There are very few people who would legit not know anyone during a particular period of their life they could track down with effort. Were you in Antarctica? That's why they'd assume you were hiding something.
You realize they didn't have to be your best friend right? Just someone that can verify you lived there? It could even be a landlord, etc. During unemployment, probably any friend (any person really) you had contact with and knew about the unemployment would do. Even an old co-worker who knew you were unemployed...