1. Security Clearance FAQs
  2. Getting a Security Clearance

What type of information is requested on a security clearance application (SF-86)

A summary of the information needed for the SF-86.

The application form, Standard Form 86—SF86 (Questionnaire for National Security Positions), requires personal identifying data, as well as information regarding citizenship, residence, education, and employment history; family and associates; and foreign connections/travel. Additionally, it asks for information about criminal records, illegal drug involvement, financial delinquencies, certain types of mental health treatment, alcohol-related incidents and counseling, military service, prior clearances and investigations, civil court actions, misuse of computer systems, and subversive activities.

The number of years of information required on the form varies from question to question—many require 7 years, some require 10 years, and others are not limited to any period of time. A PDF version of the SF86 form is available at the OPM website; however, most applicants will use the web-based version called eApp.