Job Family: Law Enforcement, Security, and Protective Services Law Enforcement and Security Officers
Services Offering this Occupation
Army  | Navy  | Air Force  | Marine Corps  | Coast Guard

Photo 1: Officers review recent police logs. Photo 2:
Officers learn new protection techniques.

Short Description
The military services have their own police forces to protect lives and property on military bases and to patrol our coastal waters. Law enforcement and security officers command military police units that enforce laws and investigate crimes. They also plan and direct programs to protect property, communications, and classified information.


What They Do
Law enforcement and security officers in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Direct the enforcement of military law
  • Develop policies and programs to prevent crime and reduce traffic accidents
  • Supervise the arrest, custody, transfer, and release of offenders
  • Plan and direct criminal investigations and investigations of suspected treason, sabotage, or espionage
  • Plan for the security of military bases and office buildings and direct security procedures
  • Manage military correctional facilities
  • Help in ballistics, forgery, fingerprinting, and polygraph (lie detector) examinations
  • Plan and oversee strategic weapons and cargo security

Helpful Attributes
Helpful fields of study include business administration, criminal justice, psychology, sociology, and public administration. Helpful attributes include:
  • Interest in law enforcement and crime prevention
  • Interest in planning and directing the work of others

Training Provided
Job training consists of classroom instruction. Training length varies depending on specialty. Course content typically includes:
  • Law enforcement administration
  • Management of security problems
  • Investigation procedures and reporting
  • Military law

Work Environment
Law enforcement and security officers in the military usually work in offices while planning and directing law enforcement and security activities. They may work outdoors while directing investigations, observing prisoners, and inspecting security systems.


Civilian Counterparts
Civilian law enforcement and security officers work in federal, state, and local prisons, intelligence and law enforcement agencies, and private security companies. Some also operate their own security firms or become private detectives. They perform duties similar to those performed in the military. They may also be called police chiefs, chief inspectors, prison wardens, security managers, or chief deputy sheriffs.

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