How to Become a Spy

The world of spies appear exciting with lots of glamor and adventure, which is a contradiction from reality. A spy works in a world filled with danger at every step, by working against the enemies of his country. They provide a great service to their countrymen, but are never openly acknowledged by the governments. People who are inspired of becoming a spy, think of it as a career opportunity, filled with adventure and a thrilling life.

The World of Spies

A spy basically obtains valuable information (related to blackmail, bribery, or enticement through other forms of coercion, etc.) that is considered as confidential or a ‘secret’, through unfair means, which are generally illegal. The risk of the information being changed or countermeasures taken before the information is used, is very high. Spies are employed by a government department known as an intelligence agency, which is involved in gathering information or intelligence, for the purpose of protecting national security against its enemies. This information is gathered through different means that includes espionage, intercepting communication, crypto-analysis, and by working with other agencies of similar profile.

Working

Spies are involved in many dangerous activities. They provide intelligence analysis with the help of spy cameras, and propagation of data related to national security. A spy provides advance warning of impending crises against the country, and helps in crisis management by detecting the bad designs of opponents. These professionals have to protect information related to national defense, military operations, and secrets of their agencies by using spying and surveillance equipment. They have to act covertly to influence events in their national interests. They are mainly involved in activities such as counter-espionage or counter-terrorism.

Becoming a Spy

This is not actually different from entering any state departmental jobs. A person has to be a citizen of the country, and pass through a selection process, which is tough and rigorous. After clearing it and having good experience and proper educational background, a person can still be rejected for many reasons. Provided below are some of the basic requirements:

1. The person needs to be a citizen of the country, to which the spying agency belongs.
2. A background without any criminal or bad debts record is a must, and other qualities includes being trustworthy, ethical, dependable, and responsible.
3. There should be no illegal drug record for the last 12 months, and having no record is even better.
4. A good academic record with a graduate degree, and a score of at least 3.0 GPA or 4.0, with subjects like international relations, economics, etc., are preferred.
5. Fluency in a foreign language as a native, especially languages that are spoken in many of the world’s political and military hot spots, is necessary.

Search for current employment opportunities at the specific websites, and apply for a relevant position after examining the job description, to ensure the minimum requirements, and prepare for the following test. A medical exam designed according to the need of the job will be conducted, followed by a psychological exam to assess the level of intelligence, judgment, and mental stability. An extremely thorough and lengthy background check will be conducted, checking the character and the loyalty quotient. There also will be a polygraph test done, which is considerably thorough, and borders on the side of caution, if there is any scope of lies. After clearing the selection process, the job is offered, and the training process starts with rigorous practice for using spy gadgets, spy phones, and other equipment. Training is also given for maintaining full composure at the time of crisis, and surviving in extreme conditions. A newly recruited spy is placed under a controller, who provides some training in spying methods, with instructions for obtaining and transmitting information. A spy has contacts only with the controller, and no one else. Anonymity is maintained for secrecy and for keeping the nationality hidden. Spies work under compartmentalization; they works with the help of their own teams. This helps in situations, when a spy is captured and interrogated. He is sworn to keep all vital information to himself at all costs.

How to Become a Product Tester

There are many aspects related to the product testing part, other than just sitting at home and earning easy money. Obviously, you cannot expect to just sit at home, get a free product delivered at home, try it out, and earn thousands of dollars by just giving its review. This is not a simple task. So, let’s learn what it is all about.

Why is it Required?
Product testing is an important part of any reputable organization or company that is into production. Consumer feedback is the most important aspect of product testing. It is very valuable for the organization, as it is this feedback that decides the fate of the product. The feedback may be responsible for both positive and negative publicity of the product. Thus, companies decide to rather hire product testers who can give a feedback of their products and publicize them as well, in a positive way of course. This way, they can also have an insight into the flaws of their product, from the consumer point of view.

What Type of Companies Go for it?
Right from the electronic products manufacturing companies to popular restaurant chains, there are various organizations that try out product testing. Consumer electronic goods manufacturing companies generally try to hire people who are good at trying out electronic appliances for testing purposes. But there is no such restriction with every company. There are even some popular shoe manufacturing companies that will pay you for trying out a new brand of shoes that they have just launched into the market. You have a variety of options to choose from. You don’t have to compulsorily stick to trying out just one type of product. The range varies from kitchenware and furniture, to the latest gizmos and gadgets in the market.

How Do You Become One?
You don’t have to approach companies and go through a rigorous recruitment process to be hired in as a product tester. If you are already working somewhere, you don’t have to quit the job for getting into product testing. Obviously, for wearing a branded jersey or storing your food in a new storage facility, you don’t have to quit your job. All you need to do is search for the right website that provides you with these opportunities. Remember, any website that asks you to pay some money to get into the job is most probably a spam website. You don’t have to try out such websites, when you have a number of other websites that offer you with this opportunity for free. You have to just fill in your name, email id, address, and other such personal details in the website’s registration form. You will also be provided with a list of categories. You can choose those categories that interest you. If you have an experience of working in a certain field that you are interested in, you will also be provided with the space to fill in your experience. What next? When a new product is launched into the market, which falls in one of the categories you are interested in, there are chances that the product will be sent to your doorstep. However, know that there are chances, but not definitely. This is because there must have been thousands of people who have registered into the website database. It’s not possible for the organization to send in a sample of their product to each and everyone for free. However, many websites promise that a product will reach you within one month from the date that you have registered on.

How Do You Test the Product?
You use the product just like any other consumer. Use it as per the company guidelines or manual that has come along with the product, and check out if it fulfills all the promises made by the organization. If you find the product worthwhile, you have to publicize the product by word of mouth. You have to simply create a fuss about the product. If there is any negative feedback or improvements that you think are advisable, you need to report it back to the company.

How to Become a Home Inspector

A career as a home inspector involves climbing over, going underneath, and through houses, for examining any flaws or defects which can possibly cause problems to the possessor of the house. It includes a physical examination of the complete apartment, building, or row house; and drafting an elaborate report on the condition of all parts, mechanical systems, and the overall structure. The information contained in the report is referred to for taking significant decisions regarding the purchase of that particular property. Home inspectors generally particularize in determining unobserved problems like ‘white ants’ or ‘mold’. They are mostly employed by insurance firms and financial companies. Nowadays, they have also started using technology such as laptops and digital photography to help them carry out their work in an effective manner.

House owners and prospective home buyers largely depend on these professionals to assist them in providing recommendations regarding their investment. Home inspectors need to be proficient in examining and scrutinizing the house components and systems, and must know where potential problems could exist. They should have the required knowledge and ability to describe the exact condition of the property in a concise and instructive manner. If one wants to get into this field, he must undergo training in areas such as house foundation; drainage systems; roofing; plumbing; writing reports; heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC); electrical systems; and environmental issues.

Education and Training

In a majority of the states, one is required to complete a certified home inspection course along with a General Educational Development (GED) diploma, or a diploma from high school. Moreover, possessing a college degree in engineering, construction management, or architecture can be advantageous. If you have done some field work or have hands-on experience in house construction and redevelopment, it is a big plus. Other prerequisites include excellent verbal and written communication, computer awareness, acquaintance with property sales, knowledge of property management, and all legalities of real estate and housing.

You can select a related course from several technical schools, which would facilitate you to gain a certification. There are various related organizations in the US, which also provide online preparation courses. Such courses include topics like checking gas lines and systems, examining doors and roofs, assessing the house structure, ensuring safety in electrical systems, and evaluating the plumbing and water supply network.

Gain Work Experience

Next, you can search for an opportunity to work under the supervision of a certified professional. Observe what he does and make a note of the duties he performs. You may also work as a trainee or an intern in a home inspection company. This would enable you to understand the job in-depth. In most states, you would need to get permission to work as a trainee.

Get Certified

For you to be eligible to work as a certified practitioner, you need to be accredited by the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI). For this, you should have passed the National Home Inspector Examination. Other requirements include having the required work experience (at least 250 home inspections), completing the appropriate training, and the inspection reports verified as ASHI-compliant.

Career Prospects

The ASHI estimates that only 77% of homes sold in the US and Canada today are inspected prior to purchase. Which means that the market is still under-served, and there is ample scope for growth in this field. Generally, these professionals earn an average revenue of USD 75,000 per annum, but this figure can vary with the size of the client base one has.