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How to Become an Airport Security Officer

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If you are interested in keeping people in this country safe, consider a career as an airport security officer. An airport security officer is also known as a transportation security officer. According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a transportation security officer screens travelers for security purposes. He protects the public by preventing dangerous or deadly objects from being loaded onto aircraft. He also may be required to conduct individual screening baggage, cargo and passengers. According to, a free salary calculator by, a transportation security officer earned an average salary of $30,599, as retrieved on April 2010.

Pass the general requirements for all TSA jobs. According to the TSA website, you must be a U.S. citizen; prepare to complete a full background investigation; pass a medical examination, be able to read, write and speak English; pass the physical ability test; be subjected to a drug screening; and take an aptitude test.

Pass the specific requirements necessary for the airport security officer position. According to a job posting for a transportation security officer on, employers seek candidates who are at least 18; have good customer service skills; the ability to repeatedly lift/carry up to 70 pounds; maintain awareness and focus in a stressful environment; consciously stand between one to four hours without break; and make effective decisions during routine and crisis situations.

Pass the educational or training requirements. Airport security officers must have a high school diploma or its equivalent, according to However, educational requirements can be replaced by one year of full-time work experience in security work.

Apply for the job by visiting the, a government job search engine. Find an opportunity by reviewing the job postings. Each job may have different applications, so follow the instructions to guide you through the process.

Interview for the job. According to the TSA website, if you are amongst the best-qualified candidates, your application will be forwarded to a hiring official. You may be interviewed in-person, on the telephone or in some rare cases, hired on the basis of your application materials.


Kat Consador is a freelance writer and professional competitive Latin dancer. Her work has appeared in eHow and various online publications. She also writes for clients in small businesses, primarily specializing in SEO. She earned a Bachelor's of Arts in Psychology from Arizona State University.