The Air Force Intelligence Officer is an asset to any mission or action as he/she is able to obtain, decipher, and distribute needed information to the pilots and special ops forces who need it. The Intel Officer is both responsible for protecting classified information as well as collecting data from external threats and understanding how to use that data. Turning data into useful information for the war fighters to utilize to their advantage is the chief role of the Intelligence Officer. They are essential to operational planning and ultimate success. Not only can an Intel Officer analyze data, but they can also coordinate with other military branches and determine the capabilities and vulnerabilities of an adversary. To the Intelligence Officer vulnerability equals opportunity.
The men and women of the Intelligence Utilization Field conduct the following as part of their career path:
- formulate programs, policy, and direction of activities involved in comparing United States and foreign overall air potential.
- conduct intelligence operations and application activities to prevent strategic, tactical, or technological surprise, and to participate in planning or conducting aerospace operations
- are responsible for mapping, charting, and geodetic policy, objectives, requirements, guidance, and oversight as they apply to planning and programming support for military operations.
To accomplish these functions, intelligence personnel are involved in the following tasks:
- direct, plan, manage, and conduct activities to collect, analyze, exploit, produce, and disseminate intelligence information, including human, signal, imagery, and measurement and signature intelligence
- assess industrial, technological, geographical, and sociological factors
- use processed intelligence information to support military operations
- prepare intelligence assessments
- provide input to national, DoD, and Air Force plans and programs
- provide support to air operations, special missions, and weapon system acquisition
- provide support to force structure planning and international security assistance plans and programs
- perform special security officer functions
- provide security guidance and functions for Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) programs and activities
- use and manage intelligence data handling systems; and exchange information and intelligence with other services, agencies, and governments.
Excluded from this career area are primary responsibilities for the functions of information, personnel, and industrial security which are included in the Security Police utilization field. This includes the following dedicated tasks:
- research of computer hardware and software, and communications and computer security which are included in the Communications-Computer Systems utilization field
- operations security that is included in the Operations utilization field; and counterintelligence functions which are included in the Special Investigations utilization field.
- Education. Four year college degree. For entry into this specialty, an undergraduate academic specialization or degree is desirable in physical, earth, computer, social, or information sciences; engineering; mathematics; or foreign area studies. There is an increase desire for more technical majors in the field. Commonly international affairs with foreign language skills or experience in different cultures is a skill in the intelligence fields.
- Training. For award of AFSC 14N3, completion of the Intelligence Officer Initial Skills Course (ISR 100) is mandatory to becoming an Intel Officer. This school is located at Goodfellow AFB in San Angelo, Texas. The course is
Experience. For award of AFSC 14N3, a minimum of 18 months of experience in intelligence operations functions.
You will learn to become experts in the following stages of intelligence:
1. Planning and direction of intelligence gathering operations.
2. Collection of intelligence data.
3. Processing and exploitation of the data for military use.
4. Analysis and production of data into useful information.
5. Dissemination and protection of the information to the warfighter.
Top Secret Clearance
Full development as an intelligence officer requires eligibility for access to SCI and Top Secret material. Such access is determined by favorable adjudication of a Special Background investigation (SBI) and periodic updates of the SBI, according to applicable security and intelligence regulations.
This requirement is managed by the Air Force Intelligence Support Agency, Directorate of Security and Communication Management (HQ AFISA/INS) through a security certification program using standards established by Director of Central Intelligence Directive 1/14 and USAFINTEL 201-1, and as specified in AFI 36-2101, Classifying Military Personnel (Officer and Airmen). The following is a complete listing of AFSCs for the Intelligence Utilization Field.
The role of an Intel Officer is diverse, especially in war as no Intelligence Officer follows the same path. If you are seeking adventure with a wide range of opportunities, the Intelligence Career Field is something to consider. The Intelligence Officer Community within the Air Force is small and the career path pyramids rather quickly at O-6 Colonel. In fact, recent years of advancement have created about 110 O-6's and above out of 3000 officers. Typical time in the job for the Intelligence Officer is 12 years.