About the Committee

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) was first established by the Intelligence Services Act 1994 to examine the policy, administration and expenditure of the Security Service, Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), and the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ). The Justice and Security Act 2013 reformed the ISC: making it a Committee of Parliament; providing greater powers; and increasing its remit (including oversight of operational activity and the wider intelligence and security activities of Government). Other than the three intelligence and security Agencies, the ISC examines the intelligence-related work of the Cabinet Office including: the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC); the Assessments Staff; and the National Security Secretariat. The Committee also provides oversight of Defence Intelligence in the Ministry of Defence and the Office for Security and Counter-Terrorism in the Home Office.

Members of the ISC are appointed by Parliament and the Committee reports directly to Parliament. The Committee may also make reports to the Prime Minister on matters which are national security sensitive.

The Members are subject to Section 1(1)(b) of the Official Secrets Act 1989 and have access to highly classified material in carrying out their duties. The Committee takes evidence from Cabinet Ministers and senior officials – all of which is used to formulate its reports.

Recent Announcements

The Committee's most recent announcements are displayed below. For earlier announcements, or to see more details/attachments, please select 'News Archive' from the navigation bar.
  • 5 November 2019
    Under the Justice and Security Act 2013, Members of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament hold office for the duration of a Parliament. The Committee Members therefore vacate their posts upon the dissolution of Parliament.

    A new Committee will be appointed after the Election. Members are nominated by the Prime Minister, after consultation with the Leader of the Opposition, and appointed by the House of Parliament from which they are drawn. The Members elect their own Chair.
    Posted 5 Nov 2019, 08:44 by ISC Admin
  • 17 October 2019
    The Committee has today sent its Report, 'Russia', to the Prime Minister.

    In accordance with the Justice and Security Act 2013, the Prime Minister will now consider whether there is any information in the report which, if published, would be prejudicial to the continued discharge of the functions of the security and intelligence Agencies. The Committee expects to be in a position to publish the report imminently.

    The Committee is continuing its Inquiry into national security issues relating to China, and has agreed subsequently to undertake an Inquiry considering the threat from Right Wing Terrorism.
    Posted 17 Oct 2019, 08:37 by ISC Admin
  • 11 September 2019
    On 9 September 2019 the House of Lords held a debate on the recent work of the Intelligence and Security Committee. A transcript of the debate can be found here.
    Posted 11 Sep 2019, 09:05 by ISC Admin
  • 19 July 2019
    The Committee has today issued the following Statement on 5G suppliers

    Posted 19 Jul 2019, 00:40 by ISC Admin
  • 18 July 2019
    The Committee has today published the following Statement in relation to Detention and Rendition

    Posted 18 Jul 2019, 04:26 by ISC Admin
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