b' The Application Process Having considered which of the 18 agencies might be right for you, you should be aware that a position in the IC will always require a security clearance. There are considerable variations among the agencies regarding the nature of the clearance required (Confidential, Secret, Top Secret, and Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Intelligence, or variations of these depending on agency) and the processes required to obtain that clearance (application forms, interviews, background investigation, polygraph). The most stringent procedures are required by the CIA, NSA, NRO and NGA. In addition to lengthy application questionnaires and interviews, you will undergo a complete background investigation, both for lifestyle and counterintelligence (CI) issues. You will also have to successfully undergo a polygraph test. The time needed to complete this process, from the date you receive a provisional offer of employment, will probably take a year or more.The FBI requires a complete background investigation and a CI-scope polygraph for all new entrants. All positions today require a Top Secret security clearanceeven cleaning and maintenance crews. The length of time for a background investigation varies there are typically more applicants in the summer and fall. During election cycles, political appointees get priority over new hires. Those applying for internships largely should have a complete submission in by November for a summer position the following year. All applications for employment must be completed on the FBIJOBS website. The Bureau of Intelligence and Research at the State Department is composed of regular Foreign Service Officers, who have passed the Foreign 23'