Inside the FBI’s Public Access Line

As the central intake for all public leads and tips made to FBI offices nationwide, the Public Access Line receives and analyzes thousands of calls each day to send to investigators in the field.


Video Transcript

Access line staff: FBI, how may I help you?

Access line staff: Thank you for calling the FBI. How may I help you?

Jason Beyer: A lot of people never thought in a million years that they would have to call the FBI. And then, you know, something devastating happens to them, and we’re here.

Hope Tomasik: The public access line—the 1-800-CALL-FBI number—is the calls that come in to us. We take all the tips on behalf of the field agents. We disseminate the information and we forward it on to the field appropriately.

Beyer: We are the voice of the FBI, so it’s pretty interesting that you get to speak to people, you know, all across the country, from every state, almost every day. So we definitely impact the public, I think more so than a lot of people would imagine. 

Tomasik: We are much more than customer service. We are analysts, we are intelligence, we are…we have to gather the information, we have to know the questions to ask, we have to know what a federal crime is and what is not. And we are assisting the agents in the field. 

Tomasik: The public is a very important part of the security of this nation. Law enforcement is very good, but they’re only as good as the information that they get. And we do count on them on picking up that phone and calling or opening up their computer and letting us know if there’s any suspicious happenings in a timely manner.

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