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An official website of the United States Government.

Background Investigations

The Office of Personnel Management, Federal Investigative Services (OPM-FIS) provides investigative products and services for over 100 Federal agencies to use as the basis for suitability and security clearance determinations as required by Executive Orders and other rules and regulations. OPM provides over 90% of the Government's background investigations, conducting over two million investigations a year.

In addition, OPM-FIS has additional responsibilities and services, including:

  • Adjudicating suitability under 5 CFR 731
  • Conducting agency training on OPM-FIS systems and processes
  • Providing informational reports profiling investigations

Applicants & Employees

Please check out our Frequently Asked Questions if you have general questions about background investigations. If you have a more specific question and are unable to find an answer to your question on the OPM-FIS website, your employing or sponsoring Federal agency's human resources or security office may be able assist you. If you are not sure who to contact at your agency, please contact OPM's Systems Access Support Team (SAST) at 724-794-5612, extension 4600. SAST can help you find the right contact within your agency.

Cooperation in Federal Employment Investigations:

Employers, Educational Institutions and Law Enforcement Neighbors, Friends, and Co-Workers of Federal Employees and Contractors

Cooperation from local law enforcement entities, courts, educational institutions, and employers, is instrumental to the completion of background investigations. Background investigations are used as the basis for making security clearance, suitability, or fitness determinations. Please select the links provided below to review our Questions and Answers related to the information we may be seeking from you. OPM-FIS appreciates the time you are taking to ensure the safety and security of the United States of America.

Human Resources & Security Specialists

Access to information relating to the background investigation process is critical to the Federal Government's development in personnel security and suitability. TOPM-FIS posts Federal Investigations Notices and maintains a “Reference Materials” page to help outline the relevant investigations rules and regulations that may help you as an HR or Security Specialist.

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