List of CIA Myths
We'd like to dispel a few myths about working for the CIA.
There are many misconceptions about working at the CIA. Explore the myths below and learn a few things that may surprise you about careers at the Central Intelligence Agency.
- Myth #1
- An average day as a CIA employee involves a car chase in a foreign city.
- Myth #2
- You can't use social media if you work for the CIA.
- Myth #3
- Hardly anyone ever makes it through the CIA background check.
- Myth #4
- You can't work at the CIA if you have a tattoo.
- Myth #5
- You can only work at the CIA if your family's been in the US for generations.
- Myth #6
- The CIA only hires Ivy League students.
- Myth #7
- The CIA won't hire anyone who has ever illegally downloaded an MP3.
- Myth #8
- Once you start at the CIA, you'll never see your family or friends again.
- Myth #9
- Job Requirement #1: Super Powers.
- Myth #10
- You might have to spy on your family.
- Myth #11
- If you don't speak a foreign language, don't bother applying.
- Myth #12
- You'll get to use lots of secret gadgets.
- Myth #1: An average day as a CIA employee involves a car chase in a foreign city.
- Not quite. Narrow alleyways and bugs in high heel shoes are far more common on TV than they are at the CIA. Supporting a worldwide intelligence operation is glamorous though – you're collecting intelligence on the cutting edge of global change, after all.top
- Myth #3: Hardly anyone ever makes it through the CIA background check.
- Definitely not true. There are specific qualifications CIA candidates must meet, but cutting class once or twice your senior year won't DQ you from a career protecting your nation. We ensure that only the most qualified and committed candidates are selected, but those decisions are based on a thorough and stringent application process. Not on a couple parking tickets.top
- Myth #7: The CIA won't hire anyone who has ever illegally downloaded an MP3.
- This one's true and false. We understand that people have all made choices in the past that they don't make anymore. And as our laws have grown to prevent illegal downloading, so have our expectations of our employees. What we're looking for is honesty and adherence to the law from all active employees.top
- Myth #8: Once you start at the CIA, you'll never see your family or friends again.
- The work we do may be secret, but your life doesn't have to be. Most of our careers are at CIA headquarters, and include a wider range of occupations than any commercial enterprise. You're welcome to talk to your mom as much or as little as you like.top
- Myth #11: If you don't speak a foreign language, don't bother applying.
- Just because CIA officers in the movies are required to speak fluent Farsi or Mandarin to do their jobs, that doesn't mean it's a requirement to obtain a position within the CIA. But, if you ever have to learn a foreign language, we'll teach it to you.top
- Myth #12: You'll get to use lots of secret gadgets.
- Actually, there's a little truth to this one. Spy movies like to show off all kinds of high-tech gear, but real CIA Officers don't necessarily use them. An analyst wouldn't need a sneaky device to write a report. But our scientists and engineers do get to work on technology so advanced, it's classified.top