FAQ

The DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) offers a wide variety of career opportunities focused on protecting the nation through the collection, analysis and dissemination of actionable intelligence to partners across the federal government, the private sector and to state and local law enforcement.

Here’s what you need to know.

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I&A is the lead Intelligence Office within the Department of Homeland Security. In keeping with our mission to protect the homeland, I&A works with federal, state and local partners to gather intelligence from the field and disseminate intelligence from the federal government to local, state and federal partners. We work on issues related to counterterrorism, cyber threats, transnational organized crime, economic security and other areas. I&A is an official member of the U.S. Intelligence Community.

As of March 2019, I&A offices will begin a gradual move over the next several years to the new DHS department headquarters on the Saint Elizabeths campus in Southeast Washington. Applicants should refer to the vacancy announcement for the specific location of the position advertised.

Most positions at I&A can be classified into four groups:

  • Intelligence Analysis: Includes analysis of issues related to terrorism, cybersecurity, economic security and transnational organized crime.
  • Intelligence Operations: Includes open source collection, document and media exploitation (digital forensics), and counterintelligence operations.
  • Mission Readiness: Includes budget and finance, human resources, program management, security, strategic planning and policy development.
  • Information Technology and Data Science: Includes information assurance/IT security, IT engineering, data science and visualization, and programming and development.

If you have an interest in any of these fields, we urge you to apply for an open position. Undergraduate and graduate students can also apply for internships. See our Internship page for more information.

I&A posts some of its vacancies on USAJOBS, a central database of federal government job openings. I&A also hires attendees at the annual Intelligence Community Virtual Career Fairs and through in-person DHS-wide hiring events. I&A jobs require U.S. citizenship and successful completion of a full background investigation and drug screening.

Yes, all I&A employees must be able to obtain and maintain a security clearance. Once you make it through the application review process, you may receive a tentative job offer. If you accept the tentative job offer, you must be granted a Top Secret clearance with Sensitive Compartmented Information access before an official final offer can be made. Security clearance screening takes an average of three to four months to complete, but the process can vary from several months to one year, depending on the individual. Security clearance screenings are based on an individual’s unique background (e.g., if a candidate has spent a significant amount of time overseas or has dual citizenship, the clearance process may take longer). We urge you to be patient during the process. The wait will be well worth it.

  • If you travel abroad, keep a list of dates, locations and foreign contacts.
  • If you have foreign contacts on social media, include them on your list.
  • Do not use illegal drugs, including marijuana. While legal in several states, marijuana is still illegal under federal law. Do not misuse legal/prescription drugs.
  • Do not illegally download material.
  • Be careful with alcohol consumption.
  • Ensure your financial obligations are paid on time and that your credit report does not contain any errors.

The investigation includes a review of delinquency in the payment of debts, tax obligations, certain criminal offenses and the illegal use or possession of drugs.

Applicants should consult the Adjudicative Guidelines for Determining Access to Classified Information to review how these and other considerations could affect their application. Issues may not necessarily preclude DHS from granting a security clearance, but they may lengthen the time required to complete the clearance process.

No. I&A generally views living or traveling abroad as a positive experience. However, there are cases where national security concerns may arise from time spent abroad. Additionally, extensive foreign experience may delay the background investigation process if there is difficulty verifying information provided on the application.

Internship applicants should not be studying abroad during the academic year prior to the summer in which they wish to intern, as an individual must be physically present in the U.S. during the clearance process.

Special consideration to qualified veterans, known as Veterans’ Preference, is not used at I&A. We urge qualified veterans to apply.

Diversity is one of the defining strengths of America, and the diversity of our workforce is essential. Men and women from I&A interact with people from across the country and around the world. Ensuring a diverse and inclusive workforce enables I&A to be more responsive to the public it serves and better equipped in fulfilling the full scope of its mission areas. Read more on our Diversity page.

DHS provides an excellent benefits package to keep you and your family secure. Benefits include health and life insurance, retirement, paid vacation and leave, flexible scheduling and training/education support. Read more about benefits.