Personal Statement of an Anonymous NSA Applicant
2 November 2008
First polygraph (for pre-hire with NSA): Flew to D.C., stayed at Marriott Hotel. In the morning, I was bussed over to the NSA location with many other applicants. After arriving, I easily passed the psychological test and cross examination. I then had an interview with Human Resources. I passed everything easily, and I figured that I would have nothing to worry about the polygraph the following day. The next day, I arrived early and was able to take the polygraph exam early. I was sent back to one of the polygraph rooms for examination. I was asked the espionage questions and then the serious crime questions, but apparently I am a spy because I could not pass the espionage question. By the way, I had just graduated from college, so I had not had time to be a spy yet. I also could not pass the question about having committed a serious crime. I was kept in the exam room for approximately three hours before they told me that I had not passed.
Second polygraph: Flew back to D.C., took the polygraph again. This time, I was seriously considering using the antipolygraph tricks to get through the test, but I figured that if I had been truthful up to this point then I should just continue and it would help me. This was a mistake, I was 100% truthful about everything (sexual habits, drinking habits, drugs, etc.), and still they did not believe that I was telling the truth about the espionage and serious crime questions. I failed the exam again after four hours of being interrogated.
Third polygraph: Once again, I flew back to D.C. to take the polygraph again. Obviously, I really wanted the job. I once again considered using the antipolygraph tricks to get through the test, but decided that once again I would tell the truth. I also decided that if I told them that I knew about the tricks, then it might help me. I was wrong on that too, because once I told them that I knew of the tricks and I knew how the polygraph worked, then they suspected me of using the tricks to bypass the test! Even though they told me that they did not work (yeah, right), they still believed that my results were close to results from someone who would be using the tricks to get past the test.
All in all, I am glad that I had the experiences of the polygraphs to get everything off of my chest. I am now glad that I did not get the job after all, because I would have had to undergo another of these interrogations every five years. If they now believe that I am a spy who committed serious crimes, then what will they do if I can't pass it in five years?
The polygraph that the NSA uses is seriously outdated and inaccurate.