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Frequently Asked Questions Investigations

For what reason, other than applying for a job, would someone be investigated.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) conducts background investigations to determine if applicants or employees (civilian, military and contractor) meet the suitability or fitness requirements for employment, or are eligible for access to Federal facilities, automated systems, or classified information. The scope of a background investigation varies depending on the duties and access requirements for the position. The employing or sponsoring agency is responsible for determining the appropriate level of investigation to be conducted based on current rules and procedures.

A background investigation may also be conducted if an individual’s position requires a higher level of access or a periodic reinvestigation to maintain existing access.  Additional information on OPM’s Federal Investigative Services can be found on our website at:



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