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CIA Agent Job Description

Kundan Pandey
Unlike portrayed in Hollywood movies, spying is just the tip of iceberg when it comes to several duties and responsibilities included in the job of a CIA agent. Here is more information about the same.
James Bond movies have made it virtually impossible for us to imagine a CIA agent as a down to earth and simple human being. However, the reality is far from what we see in movies. Most of us think that working for clandestine services is the only job of a CIA agent which is not so.
It is a fact that the National Clandestine Service is just one of the four directorates of the CIA and not all agents spy as a part of their profession. The profession of a CIA agent officially includes activities and duties performed by them in several directorates of the CIA namely;
Directorate of Science and Technology, Directorate of Intelligence and Directorate of Support.

CIA "Agents" means CIA "Officers"

CIA agents are specially trained officers recruited by the US federal government. They work as employees of the Center Intelligence Agency, commonly known as the CIA, that is also the principal adviser to the US president in matters of national security.
The CIA has set its own eligibility criteria and standards for recruiting officers in several of its departments. Right education, excellent physical fitness, higher levels of integrity and a drive to serve the nation are some qualities that are expected in a prospective CIA agent.

CIA Agent Responsibilities

The CIA was established in 1947, under the Presidency of Harry S. Truman. Since then, it has evolved in its basic roles, duties and responsibilities. The CIA was primarily established with the aim of supporting the US President and report to him in matters pertaining to the national security.
CIA officers working in numerous directorates work towards collecting, analyzing and storing data that is critical to national security. With global terrorism emerging as the greatest threat to the national and international peace in the last decade, duties of CIA agents have assumed immense significance.
The CIA works hold relevance in formulation of foreign and domestic security and social policies. The data and information gathered by the CIA is used by government in ensuring that national security remains unchallenged in all circumstances.
The CIA also works to safeguard the US President and top government officials. Depending on the type of directorate a CIA officer works in, duties may vary.
  • Directorate of Science and Technology:¬†In this directorate of CIA, the main task is information gathering that is done by using various international sources of print and electronic media. The CIA also works to develop unique technology for supporting its intelligence operations.
  • Directorate of Intelligence: All the information gathered in respective directorates is critically analyzed by the directorate of intelligence.
  • National Clandestine Service: "Spies" or undercover agents form the core of these services. CIA officers or agents working in clandestine service work in anonymity. CIA officers in clandestine jobs face tough challenges like the risk of life and inflexible, long hours of work.
  • Directorate of Support: In this branch, all administrative aspects are managed. There are IT technicians to look after the computer networks and then there are physicians to work as medical specialists, taking care of CIA agents.
Aspirants willing to join the CIA must accept a fact that it is amongst the toughest organizations in the US when it comes to selection and training. To be a part of the CIA team commands respect, pride and honor to work for the country.
For knowing detailed information on various specialties and career opportunities in CIA, you can visit the official website of the CIA. Career as a CIA agent is extremely lucrative and CIA agents have great earning potential.
Although exact salaries of CIA officials are not made public, it is estimated that in the starting years, they can make anywhere between US$40,000 to US$60,000. Those with significant work experience are able to command salaries between US$80,000 to US$100,000 or more.
Besides the salary, CIA officers enjoy hosts of benefits that include: vision, health, life and dental insurance, Student Loan Repayment Assistance Program (SLRAP) for children of CIA agents, paid vacations and holidays, free access to a credit union banking system and 401k plans.
More than the money factor, it is the reputation, power and responsibility of working for the national peace and security that makes this profession worth every risk. If you have the passion to be a part of the CIA team, be prepared to face high competition.