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The Federal Protective Service (FPS) is an American federal police organization under the DHS. The FPS was established in 1971, and its mission is to protect federal buildings, facilities, personnel, and tourists against terrorist attacks, criminal activities, and other risks.

Services Provided by a Federal Protective Service Officer

A Federal Protective Service Officer is an integral part of the Federal Protective Service and performs various duties to keep federal buildings safe and secure. 

  1. Facility Protection: Federal Protective Service Officers are responsible for securing federal properties and preventing unauthorized access. They patrol the premises, monitor security systems, and respond to alarms and other incidents.
  2. Threat Assessment: Federal Protective Service Officers assess potential threats and vulnerabilities to federal facilities and develop security plans and strategies to mitigate risks.
  3. Emergency Response: Federal Protective Service Officers are trained to respond to emergencies, including bomb threats, fires, and other critical incidents, and take appropriate actions to protect people and property.
  4. Law Enforcement: Officers in the Federal Protective Service undergo extensive training to respond effectively to a wide range of events, from bomb threats and fires to hostage situations and natural disasters.
  5. Public Relations: Federal Protective Service Officers interact with federal employees, visitors, and the public, providing information, assistance, and guidance on security procedures and policies.

Career Description of a Federal Protective Service Officer

A career as a Federal Protective Service Officer can be rewarding and challenging. Federal Protective Service Officers work in a dynamic and diverse environment, protecting federal facilities across the United States and its territories.

  • Education and Training: In most cases, Federal Protective Service Officer positions applicants must have at least a high school education. They have extensive training in the law, security measures, emergency response, and similar fields.
  • Physical Fitness: Federal Protective Service Officers must maintain physical fitness standards to perform their duties effectively. They may be required to pass physical fitness tests periodically.
  • Security Clearance: Due to the sensitive nature of their employment, Federal Protective Service Officers must get and keep a security clearance.
  • Shift Work: Federal Protective Service Officers may work nights, weekends, and holidays, to provide round-the-clock security coverage.
  • Professionalism: Officers in the Federal Protective Service are held to a high standard of professionalism, honesty, and ethical conduct in all their interactions with the public and in their official duties.

Steps for Becoming a Federal Protective Service Officer

  1. Meet Basic Requirements: Ensure that you meet the basic requirements, including age, education, and physical fitness standards, as specified by the Federal Protective Service.
  2. Apply for the Position: Look for Federal Protective Service Officer job openings on the official government job portal, USAJOBS (, and submit your application.
  3. Complete the Application Process: Submit a resume, take an online test, and any other documentation requested during the application process.
  4. Pass Background Check and Interview: If your application is chosen for further consideration, you may undergo a thorough background check and interview.
  5. Complete Training: If you make it through the interview and background check, you can get hired as a Federal Protective Service Officer and have to go through training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC).
  6. Start Your Career: Once you’ve finished your training, you can begin working as a government Protective Service Officer, where you’ll be responsible for ensuring the safety of government buildings, employees, and visitors.

Are Protective Service Officers Police?

Federal Protective Service Officers are different from your typical police officers, despite having the right to enforce the law and being tasked with doing so on federal property. Federal Protective Service Officers are law enforcement officers who protect federal facilities and properties. In contrast, traditional police officers work at the state, local, or municipal level and have jurisdiction over broader areas.

This Federal Service is Crucial

The Federal Protective Service is crucial in safeguarding federal properties and ensuring the security of federal employees and visitors. Federal Protective Service Officers are trained law enforcement professionals who provide facility protection, threat assessment, emergency response, and law enforcement services. Suppose you are interested in pursuing a Federal Protective Service Officer career. In that case, you can follow the steps outlined by the Federal Protective Service recruitment process and embark on a fulfilling and challenging career in federal law enforcement.


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