CIA Requirements

Thinking about joining the CIA? You are making an important decision. Because of our critical mission, we require several important items from all applicants. Before you apply, review the following requirements that you must meet to qualify for employment at CIA.

Careers Overview

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You Must Apply Online, While in the United States

We only accept online job applications through our official CIA Application Portal. In addition, you must be physically within the United States or its territories when you apply. This is for your safety and security.

While you may travel abroad for a short duration during the hiring process, do not contact us while you are physically outside of the United States or its territories. This includes by hard copy mail, telephone, email, or internet.

You Must Be a U.S. Citizen and at Least 18 Years of Age

You must be a U.S. citizen or a dual-national U.S. citizen to work at CIA. If you are in the process of becoming a U.S. citizen, you can apply as soon as you are awarded citizenship, but not before. We do not help individuals apply for U.S. citizenship.

Also, you must be at least 18 years of age to qualify for a job at CIA.

You Must Be Willing to Move to the Washington, DC Area

We embrace applicants from all over the country and around the world. But, keep in mind that all positions are in the Washington, DC area and some require overseas travel. You must be willing to move if you don’t already live in the area. For questions about relocation, please speak to your recruiter.

You Must Complete Security and Medical Evaluations

Because of the classified nature of our work, all CIA applicants must go through a comprehensive security clearance process.

Security Concerns and Potential Disqualifiers

We understand that no one is perfect. For this reason, we assess each applicant as a whole, rather than based on a single mistake or issue from the past. To increase transparency, here are some common reasons why we might disqualify applicants.

Our Hiring Process

Ready to apply? Get helpful information about the steps and estimated timelines related to our hiring process.

Equal Employment Opportunity

As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we do not discriminate in hiring or granting, denying, or revoking security clearances.


If you need accommodations at any point in the hiring process, our Reasonable Accommodations Staff can help.

Job Opportunities

Review our position descriptions for information about career paths, qualifications, salary levels, and more.