U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
For Immediate Release
October 14, 2003

Washington D.C.
FBI National Press Office
(202) 324-3691


FBI Seeks Candidates to Serve as Language Translators

WASHINGTON, D.C. - FBI Director Robert Mueller announced today that the FBI is currently seeking United States citizens interested in being considered for its Contract Linguist position. Applications are currently being accepted on-line at from interested candidates with language proficiency in both English and one or more of the following languages:

Albanian, Amharic, Arabic, Bulgarian, Burmese, Chinese (All Dialects), French, German, Hebrew, Indonesian, Kazakh, Korean, Kurdish, Malay, Malayalam, Pashto, Serbo-Croatian, Somali, Swahili, Tajik, Thai, Tamil, Tigrinya, Turkish, Turkmen, Uigur, Urdu, Uzbek, and Vietnamese.

As a result of Director Mueller's appeal for more translators made in September 2001, the FBI has nearly doubled the number of translators and linguists, and other candidates are in the process of being hired. However, given the breadth and scope of the FBI's mission and the FBI's expanding investigative coverage into areas which traditionally require translation support, still more candidates are needed.

Director Mueller said, "The FBI needs to have linguists who not only speak the language, but also understand the culture, and the country. The translator has to also be able to pick up subtleties that would assist investigators. It is important that the FBI have a strong translation capability spanning the full spectrum of foreign languages, so we can respond to every investigative challenge, and meet all emerging threats."

Interested candidates who have a proficiency in foreign languages which are not listed above are encouraged to visit the FBI's on-line Contract Linguist announcement at and submit an application into the Foreign Language Skills Registry for future consideration.

FBI Contract Linguists are not federal employees, but self-employed contractors who receive a non-negotiable hourly rate for services rendered. Hourly rates vary by language and range from $27 to $38 per hour. All services must be provided within an FBI office.

To qualify for the Contract Linguist position, one must be a United States citizen and be willing to submit to a screening process which includes language proficiency testing, a polygraph examination, and a comprehensive background investigation.

To obtain additional information and apply on-line, please visit our website at

Source: FBI