The FBI is the law enforcement organization in the United States charged with the duty of investigating federal crimes. An FBI agent is a person who works for this group is an investigator. He or she collects evidence, interviews persons who may have knowledge of the crimes committed, and analyzes this data with other personnel and FBI resources. When necessary, an FBI agent also helps to arrest and detain persons suspected of federal crimes, until such time as those individuals can stand trial. The FBI officially serves as the investigative arm of the US Department of Justice.
The largest role for an FBI agent is typically serving as an investigator. FBI agents are typically assigned to field offices around the United States, but they may also serve at large regional headquarters, such as the FBI building in Washington DC. Agents can be assigned to general investigatory roles, based upon the field office to which they are detailed. They can also be detailed to work with specific criminal investigations, based on individual backgrounds and interests.
Most FBI agents have at least a bachelor's degree in a criminology-related field. Agents are typically required to participate in and pass rigorous physical training. FBI agents typically work in a law enforcement office environment. They should expect irregular, long hours on the job, fieldwork, and travel as regular parts of their career.
FBI Agent Tasks
Record interviews using cameras or other means.
Interview suspects and witnesses to obtain and verify information.
Search for and collect evidence, such as fingerprints, DNA samples and computer records.
Identify case issues and evidence based on complaints, charges or allegations of violations.
Prepare detailed reports of findings.