This organization was established in 1908 as the Bureau of Investigation and the first Director of the new domestic intelligence service was Stanley Finch. One of the first acts this organization would commit is gathering intelligence about illegal prostitution in 1910. In 1935, the organization was renamed the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Into the 1920s and 1930s, the FBI sought to reduce the influence of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), as well as investigate several murders, robberies, and sales of illegal goods. From the 1940's until today, the FBI's main focus is that of national security. J. Edgar Hoover is perhaps the most well known member of the FBI in history. Hoover served as the Director of the organization for 48 years, from 1924 until 1972 and implemented many programs which came to define the FBI in the years to come.
As of 2014, the organization employs at least 35,000 people which is the most recent estimate of employees who work for the FBI. Many of these employees are field agents, intelligence officers, analysts, and scientists. Training time to become an employee for the FBI is stated at 800 hours, completed in 20 weeks. The facilities that train prospective agents are also used for refresher courses throughout an agent's career.
The structure of the FBI is somewhat similar to that of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), with many diverse departments headed by a senior staff member that reports to the Director. Andrew McCabe is the present Director of the FBI, assuming the position on May 9, 2017. This was after former director James Comey was publicly fired by President Donald Trump. The known budget of the FBI is $8.3 billion USD, but this figure was released in 2014.
The FBI has 10 main objectives which include combating white-collar crime, protecting civil rights, protecting the United States from espionage from other countries, and supporting national and state level law enforcement, to name a few. The full list of objectives can be found here. The FBI's main objective currently is to protect the United States from terrorism, whether foreign or domestic. Due to the FBI having vast amounts of resources, they are often asked to help with crime once local or state police need assistance.
1. Present State
As mentioned earlier, the FBI employs upwards of 35,000 people domestically and internationally, making it one of the largest intelligence organizations in the entire world. The headquarters of the FBI is located in Washington, D.C and is known as the J. Edgar Hoover building. The FBI is most recently known for investigating Hillary Clinton's emails during the 2016 United States Presidential election. The FBI maintains over 50 field offices around the United States, an FBI academy in Virginia, various laboratories, as well as 50 overseas offices that are attached to the US embassies. Over 500 people have appeared on the FBI's Top 10 Most Wanted since the lists inception in 1950. The reward for information leading to the arrests of any of these fugitives is usually $100,000 and over 90% who have appeared on this list have been caught.
What is the FBI?
The FBI is the domestic intelligence service of the United States, which also serves as the main enforcer of federal laws within the country.
About the Author
Justin has a Bachelor's degree (Honors) in Political Science and Media and Communications, specializing in modern Middle Eastern politics. He has been writing for World Atlas since September 2016.
Your MLA Citation
Your APA Citation
Your Chicago Citation
Your Harvard CitationRemember to italicize the title of this article in your Harvard citation.