Security Clearance Jobs

CIA's Talent Retention Program?

An article in POLITICO this morning is an interesting tale. Apparently, the CIA is offering their operatives to the private sector.  The work they perform is not on “government time”, but as a side gig.   When I first saw this story, I thought it would be agents consulting along the lines of  corporate physical security or cybersecurity.   In fact, they’re working for Wall Street firms.

The CIA defends the practice as a type of talent retention program, where highly trained CIA officers can supplement their government salary without leaving the agency for the private sector, where they stand to earn 2x to 3x their current salary. POLITICO describes the work of one such firm used by Wall Street firms.

“The firm is called Business Intelligence Advisors, and it is based in Boston. BIA was founded and is staffed by a number of retired CIA officers, and it specializes in the arcane field of “deception detection.”

The tactics that BIA officials such as these teach hedge fund clients are based in a program it calls “Tactical Behavior Assessment” which focuses on the verbal and nonverbal cues that people convey when they aren’t telling the truth.

Often, BIA deploys its CIA-trained operatives to analyze quarterly corporate-earnings calls…and BIA uses them to figure out if the company may not be disclosing the truth…The information they gleaned from this phone call could be worth millions of dollars.”

Comment Archive

  1. Avatar

    Not only is this a talent retention program but a talent acquisition program. Who wouldn’t want to work for the CIA knowing the market value demand created by this?

  2. Avatar

    Good luck to the agents–I’m betting the folks on Wall Street are better liars than the agents are at detecting the lies 🙂

  3. Avatar


    Excellent point!! We will soon see many spin-off businesses all ending with “IA.” But, what’s next–Wife cheating on you, we can help…………of course for a large fee. I really think training these folks on our dime, so they can concentrate on making big bucks may end up a PA nightmare. I’m all for these honorable men and women agents having a chance at prosperity, but after their careers with the agency have ended.

  4. Avatar

    Another article on the same topic. It talks about a former CIA agent, who runs a “corporate intelligence” firm that helps companies spy on each other, and conducts undercover interviews with unsuspecting employees and dig through their garbage.

  5. Avatar

    BW & Investigator:
    I’ve been searching for a copy of forms INV 16A and INV 16B. Do either of you know if these forms are posted anywhere?

  6. Avatar


    Are you referring to releases? If so, look for OFI Forms 16A

  7. Avatar

    I have a copy of the OFI 16A I can e-mail you.

  8. Avatar

    BW Investigator:
    I have OFI 16A. In May 2008 OPM announced their intention of replacing the OFI 16A with the INV 16A and INV 16B, but I haven’t seen either form.

  9. Avatar

    Neither have I. OPM has not given either form to our training department yet. If they do I will pass it on to you.

  10. Avatar


    Has not hit the street as far as I know–we are using the same ole

  11. Avatar

    BW & Investigator: Thanks for your replies. Perhaps after the new SF86 is approved, OPM will get their other related forms updated.