This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:Customs and Border Protection Officer

Department:Department Of Homeland Security

Agency:Customs and Border Protection

Job Announcement Number:CBPO 12-1

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$31,315.00 to $38,790.00 / Per Year


Wednesday, March 14, 2012 to Thursday, April 12, 2012




Full Time - Permanent




Few vacancies - Hawaii, HI
Few vacancies - Alaska, US
Few vacancies - Central East Coast, US
Few vacancies - East Texas, US
Few vacancies - Pacific, US
More Locations  (7)


United States Citizens


CBP: Securing America's Borders

Whether on the frontlines or serving behind the scenes supporting our mission, the men and women of CBP are dedicated to keeping America safe. CBP counts on them. Our Nation counts on them. Can we count on you?

CBP Mission Statement:

Do you desire to protect American interests and secure our Nation while building a meaningful and rewarding career?  If so, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is calling.  DHS components work collectively to prevent terrorism, secure borders, enforce and administer immigration laws, safeguard cyberspace and ensure resilience to disasters.  The vitality and magnitude of this mission is achieved by a diverse workforce spanning hundreds of occupations.  Make an impact; join DHS. Discover a challenging and rewarding career in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the sole organization responsible for securing the nation's borders.  CBP employees protect our Nation’s borders from terrorism, human and drug smug­gling, illegal migration, and agricultural pests while simultaneously facilitating the flow of legitimate travel and trade. 


CBP Officer’s play a vital role in preventing terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering the United States and enforcing customs, immigration, and agriculture laws and regulations at U.S. ports of entry.  A new video- Protecting America 24/7 - emphasizes the importance of CBP Field Operations' frontline role in helping CBP accomplish its mission.  Visit our website at to watch this video.

To ensure the accomplishment of our mission, CBP requires that every employee be reliable, trustworthy and fit for duty.  To meet these standards, applicants will be required to undergo, and successfully pass, a thorough background investigation (which will most likely include a polygraph examination), a medical examination, two pre-employment fitness examinations, a drug test, and a structured interview in order to be placed in a CBP Officer position.  Approximately one in ten applicants who receive a tentative offer of selection will successfully complete the pre-employment process and enter on duty as a CBP Officer.


For more information regarding the CBP Officer position, application process, qualifications, and pre-employment process (including the Background Investigation, Polygraph, Medical, Fitness and Drug tests) please visit:


Follow U.S. Customs and Border Protection on twitter @CustomsBorder


CBP has a critical need for CBP Officers along the southwest border of the United States.

Hiring is mainly anticipated in the southwest region.


Female CBP Officers are in high demand for the processing female travelers that are detained, interrogated and/or deported.  Therefore, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management has granted CBP an exception to Title 5 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 332, Section 332.407 which authorizes the targeted recruitment of female officers in locations experiencing a critical need.  


IMPORTANT Information you should know:

1. This position requires that you successfully complete an extensive background investigation that includes a polygraph examination. 

2. Applicants who have previously applied to the CBP Officer inventory MUST reapply to this announcement for future consideration.

3. Only applicants who submit complete application packages and pass the written test will be referred for consideration.  Early consideration may be given to applicants as they successfully complete the application process.

4. If you have already been tentatively selected for a CBP Officer position and you reapply under this announcement and subsequently are referred and selected for a position under a different geographic region, your new referral and selection will REPLACE any existing CBP Officer selection for which you are currently in process.


  • Polygraph designated position
  • Background Security Investigation
  • Residency in the US for the last three years
  • No convictions for Misdemeanor Crime of Domestic Violence
  • Written test, Medical Exam, Physical Fitness, Drug test required
  • US Citizenship Required


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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) operate 24 hours a day- 7 days a week.  The CBP Officer’s primary responsibilities are:

·                 Enforce customs, immigration, and agriculture laws and regulations;

·                 Detect and prevent terrorists and weapons of mass destruction from entering the United States;

·                 Facilitate the flow of legitimate trade and travel;

·                 Conduct inspections of individuals and conveyances;

·                 Determine the admissibility of individuals for entry into the United States; and

·                 Prevent the illegal entry of individuals and prohibited goods and smuggling of illegal drugs and other contraband.



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Applicants may qualify for the CBP Officer position based on education, experience, or a combination of both.  Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria for each grade level by the closing date of the vacancy announcement. The only exception is made for those who are currently enrolled in college. They may complete the education-based qualification requirements within nine (9) months of the closing date of the announcement


During the application process, you will be asked a series of questions regarding your education and/or experience for self certification of your eligibility for the grade 5 and/or grade 7 levels.  Based on your responses to the questions your grade eligibility will be determined.  You can only be considered and tentatively selected for the grade(s) for which you are determined eligible.


Experience Requirements for a GS-5 level: Applicants must have at least three (3) complete years of general experience that requires the ability to meet and deal with people and the ability to learn and apply a body of facts. Examples of such duties include explaining administrative requirements and procedures to others and screening forms to ensure that they are completed properly in accordance with requirements. Positions involving lead and supervisory duties or operating a business should also have provided the required knowledge, skills, and abilities. The performance of predominately typing, filing, copying, messenger duties, or other purely mechanistic tasks, is not creditable as general experience, nor is experience in trades, crafts, or equipment operator work.

Experience Requirements for a GS-7 level: Applicants must have one (1) complete year of specialized experience that entailed performance of substantive duties in inspections work at borders, seaports, airports or other ports of entry and/or work involving preliminary screening of persons for entry and immigration status, or compliance/regulatory work. Inspections experience must have demonstrated the ability to apply specialized knowledge of the laws, regulations, and procedures for importing and exporting merchandise to and from the United States and/or law enforcement work at the local, State or Federal levels, which included dealing with persons suspected of entering the United States illegally. Compliance/regulatory work experience must have demonstrated the ability to collect, develop, and evaluate facts, evidence, and pertinent data in assessing compliance with or violations of laws, rules or regulations. Specialized experience is generally gained in the performance of the duties of the following kinds of positions in the private/public sectors: Inspector, Auditor, Analyst, Examiner, Administrator, and Investigator as well as some Technicians and Assistants.

Education: If applicants do not have the work experience described above, four (4) years of study in any field leading to a bachelor's degree in an accredited college or university can be substituted and is fully qualifying for the GS-5 level. For the GS-7 level, one (1) full academic year of graduate education, or a master's or higher degree is qualifying, or meeting the provisions of Superior Academic Achievement (SAA).

Education obtained from a foreign university or college is not creditable for qualification requirements unless it has been evaluated by a private foreign educational credential evaluation service (see for a list of organizations that provide this evaluation service).

Combining qualifying experience and education: If you do not qualify based on experience or education alone, you may be able to qualify based on a combination of your experience and education. Follow the directions below in order to convert each to a percentage, and then add the percentages together to see if they total 100 percent. To determine your percentage of qualifying experience, you must divide your total number of months of qualifying experience by the required number of months of experience.

Age Requirement: The CBP Officer has a maximum entry age.  Candidates must be referred for selection before reaching their 37th birthday in accordance with Public Law 110-161.  The age restriction does not apply if you are a veteran preference eligible. If you are serving or have served in a federal civilian law enforcement position covered by Title 5 U.S.C. 8336(c) or Title 5 U.S.C. 8412(d) you may have sufficient service to meet the requirement.  Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners' experience and military enlisted service do not meet this requirement. There are no other exceptions to Public Law 110-161 allowed.


Citizenship: Applicants must be U.S. Citizens.


Residency:  If you are not currently a CBP employee, you must meet one or more of the following primary residency criteria for the last three years prior to applying to this announcement:

1.    Resided in the United States or its protectorate or territories (excluding short trips abroad, such as vacations);

2.    Worked for the United States government as an employee overseas in a federal or military capacity; or

3.    Been a dependent of a United States federal or military employee serving overseas.


Exceptions may be granted to applicants if they can provide complete state-side coverage information required to make a suitability/security determination.  Examples of state-side coverage information include: the state-side address of the company headquarters where the applicant's personnel file is located, the state-side address of the Professor in charge of the applicant's "Study Abroad" program, the church records for the applicant's overseas church missions, and/or the state-side addresses of anyone who worked or studied with the applicant while overseas.  If selected for a position, applicants must provide this information when filing their application for employment.


Firearms: CBP Officers must qualify in the use of firearms after appointment, and will be required to carry firearms in the performance of their duties.


Language Ability:  CBP Officers interact with individuals from many countries.  At some duty locations, CBP Officers may be required to be proficient in reading, writing and speaking a language other than English at the start of employment.  For example, Spanish is required for duty locations along the Southwest Border, primarily in Southern California, New Mexico, Arizona, Western and Southwestern Texas, as well as Miami, Florida and Puerto Rico.  During the application process you will be given the opportunity to select up to 3 languages (of 26 identified) in which you are proficient.  


Mandatory Completion of Basic Training: CBP Officers must attend approximately 17-19 weeks of paid training (class varies in length) at the CBP Academy located in Brunswick, GA. Your time at the Academy will be spent attending formalized classroom training and a rigorous participatory fitness training program. If you are not already involved in a physical fitness program, you may wish to begin exercising now to prepare yourself for the physical demands and requirements of the training.  Candidates selected for duty locations where they are required to be proficient in reading, writing, and speaking Spanish at the start of employment will be required to either pass a Spanish language profiency examination or attend a 6 week long Spanish immersion class at the academy, which you must pass.   Failure to successfully complete the training may be grounds for mandatory removal from the position. For more information on training at FLETC, please visit the web site at:


Misdemeanor Crime of Domestic Violence: The CBP Officer is a weapon-carrying position.  Any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence cannot lawfully possess a firearm or ammunition.   If you have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, you are not qualified for this position.  You will be required to certify whether you have ever been convicted of such an offense.  Providing false or fraudulent information is criminally punishable by fine or imprisonment (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1001).


Motor Vehicle Operation: CBP Officers must possess a valid automobile driver's license at the time of appointment.


Selective Service Registration: Prior to appointment, male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify that they have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law.


Written Test:  A written test will be administered to all individuals who successfully complete the application process. The test itself takes about five (5) hours and contains three (3) sections -- Reasoning Skills, Writing Skills, and the CBP Experience record. Applicants must obtain a combined rating of at least 70. Test scores are good for one year. Applicants who take and fail the written test will not be able to retake the examination for 1 year; in addition, a CBP Officer announcement must be open to apply.  We believe that proper test preparation is essential for the successful candidate and suggest that you take time to carefully read the study guide before you begin the application process.  You may download the guide from our website at 


Video-Based Test/Face-to-Face Interview: All candidates who pass the written test must take and pass both a video-based test (VBT) and a face-to-face structured interview (SI).


Background Investigation: These positions are categorized as "Critical-Sensitive."  Prior to appointment, tentative selectees must undergo and satisfactorily complete a background investigation, which includes but is not limited to a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) name and fingerprint check and a background investigation.  As part of the background investigation, you will be asked to submit a security questionnaire (SF-86).  The questionnaire will ask questions regarding education, residences, past and current employers, police records, financial situation, drug and alcohol usage, etc.  The background investigation will consist of, among other things, a personal interview, a check for past arrest records, a credit check, and interviews of employers and personal references.  This inquiry will cover your activities during the past ten years.  If your background includes past or present arrests, convictions, dismissals from previous jobs, outstanding debts and financial issues, excessive use of alcohol, violations of immigration laws, use of illegal drugs, and/or the sale and distribution of illegal drugs, you probably will be rated unsuitable for this position.  A history of problems in any of these areas may result in your disqualification for this position.


Polygraph: The CBPO position is a polygraph required position.  You will be required to take a polygraph examination that takes approximately 4-6 hours to complete.  The results will be used to determine your suitability for the position.

Drug Testing: Satisfactory completion of a drug test is a condition of employment into the position.  We will schedule, provide, and pay for the drug test.  Once employed, CBP Officers are subject to random and unannounced drug testing.


Physical and Medical Requirements: Because the duties of the position are of a strenuous nature and require a high degree of interaction and responsibility to the public, you must undergo and successfully pass our medical screening process.  We will schedule, provide and pay for the required basic medical examination.


Physical Fitness Screening: Due to the strenuous nature of the CBP Officer duties and the associated training programs, fitness tests have been developed and will be used to screen candidates for entry-level CBP Officer positions.  Candidates will be required to pass 2 pre-employment fitness tests.


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DHS offers competitive starting salaries and an attractive benefits package, including: health insurance, Thrift Savings Plan (similar to a 401(k)), Flexible Spending Account, retirement plan, life and long-term care insurance, Employee Assistance Program, personal leave days and paid Federal holidays.  Other benefits may include: flexible work schedules, telework, tuition reimbursement, transportation subsidies, uniform allowance, health and wellness programs, and fitness centers.  DHS is committed to employee development and offers a variety of employee training and development opportunities.  For more information, go to and select "Benefits".


          Annual increases in salary - salary (step) increases, annual general pay increases and locality pay increases as provided by regulation.

          Overtime compensation - CBP Officers are required to work overtime, but receive overtime pay at premium rates. 

          Uniform allowance - CBP Officers receive a uniform allowance to offset the cost of purchasing the required CBP Officer uniform.

          Career Progression: This position offers promotion potential to the GS-12.  Positions with promotion potential do not guarantee promotion, nor is the promise of promotion implied. 

          Probationary Period:  All employees new to the federal government must serve a one year probationary period during the first year of his/her initial permanent federal appointment to determine fitness for continued employment.  Current and former federal employees may also be required to serve or complete a probationary period.

          Travel to Initial Duty Location: CBP Officers are required to pay all expenses to their initial duty station. Travel expenses for training will be at agency expense.

          Environmental Conditions and Physical Demands: CBP Officers may be required to work outdoors, often under difficult weather conditions, including rain, cold, ice, heat, and humidity. They may also be required to work under difficult environmental conditions, including exposure to harmful substances, vehicle exhaust fumes, or working in confined areas. In some work environments, CBP Officers perform duties that may require running, climbing, driving vehicles, heavy lifting, or other physically demanding activities.

          Direct Deposit: All agency employees are required to participate in Direct Deposit/Electronic Funds Transfer for salary payments.

          E-Verify:  CBP uses E-Verify to validate all newly hired applicants' ability to work legally in the United States.  To learn more about E-Verify, please follow this link: keyword e-Verify. 


Geographic Locations
Applicants applying to this announcement will only be able to select from one geographic region.  Positions may be filled at any CBP port of entry within the regions. You must be willing to work at any duty location that falls within that region’s jurisdiction. Relocation expenses will not be paid to the initial duty location.

8016 Southwest - (to include but not limited to the following locations) Laredo, El Paso, Fabens, Brownsville, Del Rio,
Eagle Pass, Pharr, Progreso, Presidio, Rio Grande City, and Roma, Texas; Andrade, Calexico, Otay Mesa, San Ysidro, Tecate, and San Bernardino, California;  Arizona, and New Mexico.
8027 Texas East – (to include but not limited to the following locations) Houston, Galveston, Dallas, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock, Midland, Freeport, Port Arthur, and San Antonio, Texas.
8017 Northwest/Northern Border - States of Washington, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota and Minnesota
8028 West Coast - (to include but not limited to the following locations)  San Francisco, Sacramento, Oakland, Los Angeles, Long Beach, California and the States of Nevada and Oregon
8018  Midwest –States of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Arkansas, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Ohio, Colorado and Michigan.
8019 Northeast -(to include but not limited to the following locations)  Erie, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Albany, Alexandria Bay, Champlain, Ogdensburg, New York; and the States of Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Maine.
8029 Central/East Coast - (to include but not limited to the following locations)  Queens/JFK New York, Philadelphia, and the States of Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Virginia, and West Virginia.
8020 Southeast - Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Kentucky  
8021 Florida – Florida, Puerto Rico, St. Thomas VI and St. Croix, VI
8030  Pacific  - Guam, Northern Mariana Islands
8031  Alaska
5746  Hawaii
Equal Employment Opportunity: U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All candidates will be considered regardless of their race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, protected genetic information, status as a parent, lawful political affiliation, marital status, physical/mental disability (if not a job factor), membership or non-membership in an employee organization, or any other nonmerit factor.


Reasonable Accommodations: CBP provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis. If a reasonable accommodation is needed for any part of the registration and hiring process, applicants should contact the office scheduling them for that portion of the process.


Agency Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) Eligible:  If you have never worked for the Federal government, you are not CTAP/ICTAP eligible.  Information about ICTAP or CTAP eligibility can be found at:  To be considered well qualified under CTAP/ICTAP, you must earn a score of 85 or above on the rating criteria developed for this position.  In addition, you must submit the supporting documents listed in the “Required Documents” section of this announcement.


The study guides and reference materials provided as links in the announcement and during the application process are very thorough and may take a little longer to open in your browser.


CBP encourages Women, Minorities and Veterans to apply for an exciting career with Customs and Border Protection, for more information about CBP's mission, activities and careers, please visit our website at:



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To begin your application, follow this link: and follow the prompts. This announcement closes at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Time on 04-30-12 or at 11:59 pm EST on the day that our staffing needs are met, whichever comes first.  No application will be accepted after that date and time.  We recommend that you apply as soon as possible.


Applicants will be directed to a pre-test for the CBP Officer position.  The pretest provides insight into how well you might do on the actual test for CBP Officer. We believe that proper test preparation is essential for the successful candidate and suggest that you take time to carefully read the study guide before you begin the application process.  You may download the guide from our website at:  


Applicants will be instructed on how to submit their complete application package during the application process.  Please see the “Required Documents” section for additional information.  Applicants who successfully complete the application process will be scheduled for the written test by the Office of Personnel Management.


Required Documents:

The following documents will be requested during the application process: 

          Resume:  A resume describing your job-related qualifications is required and must be in English. Transcripts are required if basing any part of your qualifications on education. 

          Agency Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) eligibility:  You must submit a separation notice; SF-50B; a current (or a last) performance rating of record of at least fully successful or equivalent; an agency certification that you cannot be placed after injury compensation has been terminated; an OPM notification that your disability annuity has been terminated; or a Military Department of National Guard Bureau notification that you are retired under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456.

            Veterans Preference:  To apply veteran's preference you must submit the following proof of eligibility:

·         Five Point Preference:  DD 214 (Member Copy 4 showing character of service)

·         Ten Point Preference:  DD 214 (Member Copy 4) and supporting documentation as listed on the Standard Form 15 (application for 10-Point Veteran's Preference).  Click this link for a copy of the SF-15:  Veteran's with a service-connected disability must also submit a VA Disability Award letter dated 1991 or later.

·         If you are currently serving on active duty:  A statement of service from your unit identifying the branch of service, period(s) of service, campaign badges or expeditionary medals earned, and the date you will be separated or be on approved terminal leave..  A DD 214 will be requested upon separation from the military.

·         For more information about veteran's preference, please click this link:  Please upload veterans’ documents under miscellaneous documents.

          OF-306 “Declaration for Federal Employment”

          CBP Officer Agreements accepting training and conditions of employment will be requested.


You are not required to submit official documentation as part of your application package; unofficial copies will be accepted.  However, if selected, you must provide the required official documentation prior to appointment.  If any part of your application is not received you will be found ineligible.


It is your responsibility to verify that information entered, uploaded, or faxed (i.e., resume, veterans documentation, transcripts, agreement forms etc) is received and is accurate.  Human Resources will not modify or change any part of your application.  Applications and supporting documentation will not be accepted by mail or email.  The address below is for inquiries only.   We strongly encourage you to apply online.


Minneapolis Hiring Center
Phone: (952)857-2927
Agency Information:
CBP Minneapolis Hiring Center
5600 American Blvd
Suite 700
Bloomington, MN


What to Expect Next

Once you have completed the application process and passed the written test your name will be added to the CBP Officer inventory.  You will be considered for future openings in "score order" in accordance with veterans’ preference regulations for the geographic region you selected.  Hiring for CBP Officers is mainly anticipated in the southwest region of the United States.  As referrals are made in your geographic region, and your score is reached, you will be referred for consideration. If you are tentatively selected for a position, your name is removed from the inventory.


If you are selected for a position, you will be emailed a tentative selection letter.  There is no guarantee that everyone will be selected for a position.  The Office of Personnel Management and the Minneapolis Hiring Center uses e-mail to communicate with applicants; therefore, it is important to ensure your e-mail address and all other contact information is kept current. We also encourage applicants to check their e-mail frequently (e.g. one a week) during the pre-employment process to include your spam or junk mail folders.


Additional Duty Location Info

Few vacancies - Hawaii, HI
Few vacancies - Alaska, US
Few vacancies - Central East Coast, US
Few vacancies - East Texas, US
Few vacancies - Pacific, US
Few vacancies - West Coast , US
Few vacancies - Florida and the Caribbean, US
Few vacancies - Midwest Region, US
Few vacancies - Northeast Region, US
Few vacancies - Northwest Northern Border Region, US
Few vacancies - Southeast Region, US
Many vacancies - Southwest Border Region, US

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Job Announcement Number:

CBPO 12-1

Control Number: