How does the FBI work?

The FBI is a US security agency with a focus on fighting terrorism and corruption.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is the United States’ domestic intelligence and security agency, and serves as the nation’s federal law enforcement agency. The FBI is part of the US Department of Justice, reporting to both the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence. As America’s premier counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and criminal investigation agency, the FBI has the authority to investigate violations in more than 200 federal crime categories.

The FBI is a primarily domestic agency , headquartered in the J. Edgar Hoover Building, Washington, with 56 representative offices in major cities across the United States and more than 400 city-based agencies. smaller and regions across the country.

How does the FBI work?
FBI headquarters. (Photo: FBI).

The FBI also maintains an important international footprint, operating more than 60 legal attaché offices and more than a dozen small offices globally. Foreign offices exist primarily for the purpose of coordinating with foreign security services of the United States and are not usually conducted unilaterally in the host country.

The FBI was founded in 1908 as the Bureau of Investigation and renamed the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1935. The first FBI director was J. Edgar Hoover, who served 48 years from 1924 to 1972 (including the interval. time since the FBI was also known as the Bureau of Investigation). After his death, the US Congress passed a law limiting the term of the FBI director to 10 years.

The FBI is organized into the Office of the Director (including many associated administrative offices) and function-based branches. At the top of each branch is the executive assistant. Some branches report to the deputy director of the FBI while others report to the assistant deputy director.

The main tasks of the FBI are counter-terrorism, counterintelligence, civil rights protection, cyber attack investigation, corruption, white-collar crime, organized crime, violent crime. In addition, the FBI also prevents, responds and investigates cases related to weapons of mass destruction. At the same time, the FBI cooperates with other law enforcement agencies, such as fingerprint recognition, lab testing, and training. They also gather, share, and analyze intelligence to support their and partners’ investigations against the security threats the United States faces.

The FBI has more than 30,000 agents, specialists, and other employees. Applicants to the FBI must be between the ages of 23 and 37, veterans may be given preference after age 37. They must be US citizens, have a good resume and have a 4-year bachelor’s degree.

All FBI employees are required to undergo top-secret security checks (background checks, foreign trips, assets, personality, etc.). Agent candidates must pass a physical exam consisting of a 300m run, a 1-minute sit-up, push-ups and a 2.4km run. In addition, applicants must pass a cardiovascular exam with questions about drug history.

How does the FBI work?
Organization chart of the FBI 2014. (Graphic: FBI).

The director of the FBI is appointed by the President of the United States and must be approved by the US Senate . The FBI director is responsible for the day-to-day operations at the FBI. Together with the deputy director, the director ensures that cases and operations are handled correctly, and ensures that FBI representative offices are led by qualified people.

Since J. Edgar Hoover became the first FBI director in 1924, he has maintained the agency is nonpartisan and is simply responsible for finding out the truth. According to the NYTimes, the director of the FBI must be politically neutral, showing no allegiance or favoritism to any party. This explains why the US Congress passed a law that stipulates the working time of the FBI director is 10 years, regardless of the presidential term.

While operating as part of the US Department of Justice, the FBI is known to be one of the most independent agencies in the executive branch. The National Constitution Center, an NGO that specializes in interpreting the US constitution, calls the FBI director position “one of the most independent officials in the federal government”.

The most recent FBI director was James B. Comey, who was appointed in 2013 by US President Barack Obama. He was fired by US President Donald Trump on May 9, 2017.

Did you know that the FBI has a reading room with more than 6,700 documents storing investigative information about a series of famous people like Marilyn Monroe, Steve Jobs…? Even more amazing is that you absolutely have the right to request to see these items if you want.

In the US, you must have your fingerprints taken when you get your driver’s license or buy a gun. These data are saved into the FBI’s automatic fingerprint data recognition system.

This massive database has grown to 100 million and is all kept at an agency located in Clarksburg, West Virginia – 250 miles from the FBI’s headquarters in Washington. Despite storing such a huge amount of information, the FBI insists that it only needs about 12 minutes to compare and contrast information when needed.

On the other hand, if a person has had a DNA test, that result can also be used by the FBI to investigate in necessary cases.

How does the FBI work?
To become an FBI agent, you must be between the ages of 23 and 37.

Candidates for the FBI entrance exam will be disqualified immediately if they smoked within the last 3 years, or used any illegal substances within the past 10 years. They are also required to have excellent eyesight to complete the task well.

To become an FBI agent, you must be between the ages of 23 and 37, and be able to meet tough physical demands. For example, women must be able to complete the 300m run in 65 seconds, and men in 55 seconds. In addition, those with special expertise in fields such as accounting, finance or law will have great advantages when taking the entrance exam here.

If you think that an organization in charge of security for the whole country must have a very advanced computer system, unfortunately you are wrong. As of 2012, the FBI was still working on paper documents.

In fact, they have been planning to move all the data to an electronic system worth 425 million dollars since 2009. However, due to problems in computer encryption, it was not until August 2012 that the system This has just been put into operation.

Any FBI agent who violates the law will be subject to the same disciplinary measures as ordinary people, even more severe. In October of this year, several FBI agents working abroad were accused of prostitution and were immediately fired. This proves the transparency and rigor in the operation of the country’s top security agency.