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Jobs and Career Opportunities in Law Enforcement & Security

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Federal Jobs

There are many federal law enforcement agencies and subsequently many jobs available.  Federal officers enforce federal law. Some employ uniformed police officers; others hire criminal investigators sometimes called special agents who conduct investigations. Each agency has certain duties and responsibilities that have been mandated by the legislature. Federal law enforcement officers can arrest people who commit federal crimes.

Below are some of the major Federal Law Enforcement agencies.

Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is the Federal government’s chief investigating corps. They have jurisdiction over the violation of greater than 260 laws and perform investigations that deal with all types of crime, including sensitive issues of national security. FBI agents investigate white-collar crime, bribery and blackmail, terrorism and espionage, drug trafficking, racketeering, financial crimes, bank robberies, civil rights violations, interstate criminal activity, and copyright infringements and violations. Agents may do so by tracking the movement of stolen goods across state lines, examining accounting and business records, conducting surveillance, listening to legal wiretaps, or performing undercover investigations.

Border Patrol
Border Patrol Agents are primarily responsible for preventing terrorists and terrorist’s weapons, from coming into the United States; the detection and apprehension of illegal aliens and those who smuggle them. The Border Patrol is specifically responsible for patrolling about 6,000 miles of Mexican and Canadian international land borders and more than 2,000 miles of coastal waters in the south eastern United States.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement – ICE
As part of the Department of Homeland Security -ICE- is the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security. Special agents protect public safety by targeting the people, currency and supplies that support terrorist and criminal activities. Special Agents enforce the nation’s customs and immigration laws by investigating the smuggling of illegal aliens and illegal imports.

Marshals Service
U.S. marshals and deputy marshals have the widest jurisdiction of any federal agency, performing various tasks from pursuing and arresting federal fugitives to protecting members of the Federal judiciary. Their primary role is to protect and make certain of the successful operation of the Federal judiciary system. To accomplish this task they protect federal witnesses, transport federal prisoners, and control property and capital seized in federal criminal investigations. The Marshals Service conducts investigations involving: escaped federal prisoners; probation, parole and bail default violators. 

ATF- Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
The ATF is committed to preventing terrorism, reducing violent crime, and protecting our Nation. ATF Agents are responsible for investigating violations of federal law relating to alcohol, tobacco, firearms, explosives and arson.

Capitol Police
The United States Capitol Police provides security for the United States Capitol Building. They protect life and property, detect, prevent and investigate criminal acts, enforce traffic regulations around the Capitol. They are responsible for protecting Members of Congress, Officers of the United States Senate, United States House of Representatives, and their families.

Central Intelligence Agency
This agency protects Agency personnel, facilities and information through the enforcement of Federal Laws and Agency Regulations.  Security Protective Officers are entry-level armed and uniformed positions.  They are assigned to the CIA’s Security Protective Service. 

Customs and Border Protection
Customs and Border Protection Officers work at our nation’s international airports, seaports or land border crossings. They are part of the front line of defense against terrorist intrusion, as well as criminal activities, such as drug smuggling, money laundering, and undocumented entry of individuals, weapons trafficking, smuggling of prohibited goods and a host of customs violations. CBP Officers interact with the traveling public arriving from overseas.

Transportation Security Administration
Part of the Department of Homeland Security - U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees help secure our transportation infrastructure from future terrorist acts in intelligence, regulation enforcement and inspection positions. Federal Air Marshals serve as the primary law enforcement agency within the Transportation Security Administration and are deployed on flights around the world and in the United States. They protect air passengers and work closely with other law enforcement agencies to accomplish their mission. Air Marshals also staff several positions at different organizations such as the National Counterterrorism Center, the National Targeting Center, and the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces.

Defense Criminal Investigative Service
DCIS Special Agents are civilian law enforcement positions. They conduct investigations in the Department of Defense as the Inspector General considers appropriate. They ensure U.S. military personnel have the best and safest equipment to accomplish their mission. Special agents combat terrorism by working with Federal, State, and Local law enforcement agencies as part of Joint Terrorism Task Forces throughout the United States.

Department of State Diplomatic Security
Diplomatic Security Special Agents are federal law enforcement officers who serve worldwide. Overseas, special agents advise ambassadors on security issues and synchronize all of a mission's security programs. Special agents spend a substantial portion of their careers abroad serving at diplomatic posts. In the United States, agents investigate passport and visa fraud and protect the Secretary of State and visiting foreign dignitaries.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
As part of the Department of Homeland Security- FEMA employees prevent losses from disasters wherever possible, and assist when they do happen. Employees work as an intensely-focused team dedicated to helping our country prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from disasters.

Drug Enforcement Administration
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is the only authorized governmental agency that conducts investigations into foreign illegal drug activity and trafficking. DEA agents’ primary task is to enforce domestic laws and regulations related to illegal drugs. In order to accomplish this they may set up surveillance of known or suspected criminals, conduct undercover investigations into drug organizations, and conduct complicated criminal investigations.

Environmental Protection Agency
The United States EPA is expected to protect human health and the environment. Special Agents in the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance investigate and analyze environmental crimes. They also identify and work to prevent noncompliance with environmental statutes.

Federal Protective Service
The United States Federal Protective Service is part of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. FPS is charged with providing the vast federal communities controlled by General Services Administration with the crucial levels of protection to safeguard their tenant federal agencies and their people. Its personnel have full law enforcement authority to respond to criminal incidents and emergencies. Many of their officers are in uniform and perform traditional police services. They also maintain a small force of plainclothes special agents to investigate crimes occurring on federal properties.

Fish & Wildlife Service
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service plays a vital role in safeguarding some of this nation's rich natural resources such as fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats. Special Agents enforce wildlife laws. They conduct investigations which may include activities such as surveillance, undercover work, seizing contraband, making arrests, and preparing cases for court. Refuge law enforcement officers protect wildlife from poaching and ensure the safety of visitors to the national wildlife refuges.

Internal Revenue Service
Special Agents with the law enforcement branch of the IRS investigate potential criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code and related financial crimes. Special Agents find criminals or crimes by following the money. They are first and foremost investigative accountants. No matter what the source, all income earned, both legal and illegal, has the potential of becoming involved in crimes which fall within the investigative jurisdiction of the IRS Criminal Investigation.

Postal Service
Postal Inspectors are federal law enforcement agents with investigative jurisdiction in all criminal matters involving the integrity and security of the U.S. Postal Service. Postal Inspectors investigate criminal, civil, and administrative violations of postal-related laws, often using forensics and cutting-edge technologies. They execute search warrants, prepare comprehensive reports and testify in court proceedings.

Secret Service
As part of the Department of Homeland Security -Secret Service Agents are charged with two missions: protection and investigation. They are authorized by law to protect the President and the Vice President along with their immediate families. They also protect former Presidents, their spouses and children of former presidents until age 16. In addition, they will protect visiting heads of foreign states and their spouses traveling with them and major Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates and their spouses. Their primary investigative mission is to safeguard the payment and financial systems of the United States. This includes investigating the counterfeiting of U.S. currency, credit card fraud, stolen government checks and crimes that involve financial institution fraud.

Uniformed Officers of the Secret Service provide protection for the White House Complex, the Vice-President's residence, the Main Treasury Building and Annex, and foreign diplomatic missions and embassies in the Washington, DC area. Uniformed Division Officers also travel in support of the Presidential, Vice-Presidential, and foreign heads of state missions. They have specialized divisions such as counter snipers and canine.

Military-related Federal Jobs

Air Force Office of Special Investigations
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations is the Air Force's major investigative service. Most Special Agents are civilian personnel who provide specialized investigative services to commanders of Air Force activities. Primary responsibilities are criminal investigations and counterintelligence services. They identify, investigate and neutralize criminal, terrorist, and espionage threats to Air Force and Department of Defense personnel and resources.

Coast Guard Investigative Service
As part of the Department of Homeland Security -Special Agents assigned to The Coast Guard Investigative Service carry out the Coast Guard's internal and external criminal investigations.  Special Agents are full-time civilian investigators hired from competent civilian applicants.  They provide personal protection services such as the security of the integrity of the Coast Guard and its staff.

Naval Criminal investigative Service

NCIS is the primary law enforcement and counterintelligence arm of the United States Department of the Navy. Special Agents work closely with other local, state, federal, and foreign agencies to counter and investigate serious crimes including terrorism, espionage, homicide, rape and more. NCIS is the Navy's chief source of security for the resources of America's seagoing forces. Special agents travel the world and may even be stationed aboard a ship. This is a civilian position that does not require you to join the Navy.

Student Jobs & Opportunities in Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security is providing invaluable work experience and educational support to talented and diverse students who are committed to putting service before self in the efforts to secure the homeland.  The Department and its components offer students exciting education and employment opportunities through training programs, internships, co-ops, scholarships, and fellowships.

 

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