FBI Agent vs. Police Officer: What’s the Difference?

Participation in the data collection is open to all federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and investigative agencies. Participation is voluntary, and the FBI works closely with law enforcement and major law enforcement organizations to encourage agencies to share this important data. The FBI provides a web portal and bulk electronic submission options for agencies to report their information.

What is the difference between the fbi and the police?

Caught on bodycam: FBI agent chasing Florida corruption complaint ends up locked in patrol car

What does an FBI agent do?

Here are some of an FBI agents primary responsibilities:

What is an FBI agent?

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents, or special agents, are law enforcement professionals who the FBI employs to conduct its field operations. The FBI is an intelligence and law enforcement agency regulated by the federal government, and unlike other federal intelligence agencies, the FBI solely operates domestically.

FBI agents aim to analyze data and prevent serious threats to national security, including terrorism, organized crime, foreign intelligence gathering and cyber threats. They may coordinate with local police and legal professionals, depending on the area in which they work. These professionals often attend the FBI Academy when beginning their careers, where they learn law enforcement techniques and skills, fundamental tenets of law and intelligence gathering methods. Aside from classroom work, they typically participate in physical training, self-defense courses and weapons training.

What does a police officer do?

Here are some of common duties and responsibilities a police officer may perform:

What is a police officer?

Police officers are law enforcement professionals who report to city, county or state governments. They aim to enforce local and federal laws and protect the lives and property of people in the communities in which they work. Police officers may advance to detective positions after gaining experience, in which case they focus on gathering evidence in criminal cases and prosecuting defendants in court. Police officers attend training academies where they learn legal basics, along with law enforcement techniques and weapons skills.

What is the difference between an FBI agent and a police officer?

FBI agents work for the federal government and aim to combat major threats to security and large-scale violations of federal law. Their mission also includes intelligence gathering and opposing foreign threats to the United States.

Police officers work for local governments and aim to enforce laws that pertain to the area in which they work. Many police officers handle minor infractions and traffic violations but may pursue large criminal investigations, especially if they work in larger cities. Local police officers usually dont participate in intelligence operations or aim to deter foreign adversaries. The training for police officers is also often shorter and less intensive than training for FBI agents.

What are the requirements to become an FBI agent or a police officer?

Here are some of the requirements for professionals who want to pursue careers as FBI agents or police officers:

Requirements to become an FBI agent

Here are some common requirements for becoming an FBI agent:

Requirements to become a police officer

Qualifications vary by location, but here are some common requirements to become a police officer:

Work environment for FBI agents and police officers

FBI agents commonly work in one of the FBIs field offices or at the Bureaus national headquarters in Washington D.C. They may spend much of their time working in office spaces completing administrative tasks and analyzing data, or they might conduct field missions. FBI agents may travel throughout their jurisdictions to gather intelligence, pursue investigations, execute warrants or coordinate with local law enforcement professionals. FBI agents work long hours—sometimes exceeding 50 hours a week—and they may work certain nights, weekends and holidays.

Police officers often work from their local police department headquarters. They spend much of their workdays in an office setting, processing paperwork or completing administrative tasks. They may also work in various public areas of their jurisdiction, patrolling, responding to calls and monitoring traffic. Most police officers work full time, and they might also work late nights, holidays and weekends.

Salary and job outlook for FBI agents and police officers

Please note that none of the organizations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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