What Happens When You Join The Witness Protection Program?

What Happens When You Join The Witness Protection Program?

Nearly everyone has probably heard of the Witness Protection Program, but the awareness stops there. What happens once you join? It began in 1970 as a creation of the Organized Crime Control Act. Memberships begin with a visit from a U.S. marshal, whether anticipated or not. Families are usually given a few relocation options, and the chosen location is only disclosed to a few in the program. They are given new names, hotel rooms until suitable housing it found, and a stipend until the adults find work.


Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    The Witness Protection Program (WITSEC) has successfully protected more than 18,000 people since it began in 1971. (0:19)

  • 2

    Families relocated by the Witness Protection Program are given stipends for housing and other expenses until the adults have found the means of supporting themselves. (1:47)

  • 3

    Legally sealed name changes, new social security numbers and cards, new birth certificates, and new drivers licenses are all routinely issued for people in the Witness Protection Program. (3:16)

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