Intelligence: Getting it Together

Intelligence and security across Britain is often fragmented and modestly resourced – it was devised for an earlier age and a different threat.

The World Today Updated 21 October 2020 Published 1 March 2003 3 minute READ

Kevin O'Brien

Senior Policy Analyst, RAND Europe

To combat the new terrorism it has to evolve rapidly to be ready for the moment when an attack takes place.

It is clear that the threat of terrorism in Britain has changed greatly from that presented by Irish-based groups over the last two centuries. Terrorists are now willing to target any and all aspects of society, and a larger number of them – and their supporters – are now based here rather than overseas. Police and security arrangements must evolve to meet this threat.

Since 2001, there have been a number of calls for the establishment of a British equivalent to the new US Department of Homeland Security. The recently released Inspectorate of Constabulary report ‘A Need to Know: HMIC Thematic Inspection of Special Branch and Ports Policing’ has made recommendations for change which build on recent developments in national security.

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