News

Current Parliament

2 March 2021

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today released a statement on the Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Act 2021.

ISC Statement on the Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Act 2021

10:53, 2 March 2021

19 November 2020

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published the following report 'GCHQ accommodation procurement: a case study', and has also issued a press release:

09:30, 19 November 2020

5 October 2020

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published the following report 'Northern Ireland-related terrorism', and has also issued a press release:

14:31, 5 October 2020

24 September 2020

The Committee has today released a statement on the Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill.

ISC Statement on the Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill

13:52, 24 September 2020

17 September 2020

The following appeared on the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings record for yesterday (Wednesday 16 September 2020):

6     Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

Resolved, That Chris Grayling be removed from the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under Schedule 1 to the Justice and Security Act 2013 and Bob Stewart be appointed to that Committee under section 1 of that Act.—(MrJacob Rees-Mogg.)

12:46, 17 September 2020

28 August 2020

The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP has, in accordance with the Justice and Security Act, written to the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament tendering his resignation from the Committee. The Chairman has sent a reply.

18:25, 28 August 2020

21 July 2020

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published the following two reports, and has also issued a press release in relation to the Report on 'Russia': 

10:41, 21 July 2020

20 July 2020

The Committee's Report on Russia, prepared by its predecessor, will be laid before Parliament at 10:30am on Tuesday 21 July.

The Report will then be available here on the Committee's website.

(Please note that advance copies will not be available).

14:29, 20 July 2020

16 July 2020

The Committee has unanimously agreed this morning that it will publish the Report on Russia prepared by its predecessor before the House rises for the summer recess.

13:31, 16 July 2020

15 July 2020

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) today elected Rt Hon Dr Julian Lewis MP as its Chairman.

17:15, 15 July 2020

14 July 2020

On the afternoon of Tuesday 14 July 2020 the House of Lords voted to approve the House of Lords Member of the ISC. The Official Hansard record can be found here.

16:41, 14 July 2020

14 July 2020

On the evening of Monday 13 July 2020 the House of Commons voted to approve the House of Commons Members of the ISC. The Official Hansard record can be found here.

12:21, 14 July 2020

10 July 2020

The following item relating to Membership of the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) is on the House of Commons Order Paper for debate and vote on Monday 13 July 2020:

5. INTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY COMMITTEE OF PARLIAMENT

Up to 90 minutes (Standing Order No. 16(1))

The Prime Minister

That Chris Grayling, Sir John Hayes, Stewart Hosie, Dame Diana Johnson, Mr Kevan Jones, Dr Julian Lewis, Mark Pritchard and Theresa Villiers be appointed to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under Section 1 of the Justice and Security Act 2013.


The following item relating to Membership of the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) is on the House of Lords Order Paper for debate and vote on Tuesday 14 July 2020:

Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Evans of Bowes Park) to move that this House approves the nomination of Lord West of Spithead as a member of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament.  

11:23, 10 July 2020

17 December 2019

On 13 December No. 10 wrote to the Committee Secretariat to notify it that the Prime Minister has now confirmed that there is no material in the Committee's Russia Report which, if published, would be prejudicial to the discharge of the functions of the security and intelligence Agencies, and that therefore the Report may be published once the new Committee is appointed.

15:23, 17 December 2019

Previous Parliaments

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 and therefore vacate their posts upon the dissolution of Parliament. The new Committee will be appointed after the 2019 General Election.

Members are appointed by the Houses of Parliament (having been nominated by the Prime Minister in consultation with the Leader of the Opposition). The Chair of the Committee is elected by its Members.

16:09, 5 November 2019

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.

16:37, 17 October 2019

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.

17:05, 11 September 2019

19 July 2019

The Committee has today issued the following Statement on 5G suppliers

ISC Statement on 5G suppliers

08:40, 19 July 2019

18 July 2019

The Committee has today published the following Statement in relation to Detention and Rendition.

Statement in relation to Detention and Rendition

12:26, 18 July 2019

30 April 2019

The following appeared on the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings record for yesterday (Monday 29 April 2019):

9     Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

Resolved, that Ian Blackford be removed from the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under Schedule 1 to the Justice and Security Act 2013 and Stewart Hosie be appointed to that Committee under section 1 of that Act.- (Paul Maynard.)

08:57, 30 April 2019

25 April 2019

On 6 March, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament announced that following its current Inquiry into Russia, its next Inquiry would be into national security issues relating to China. Amongst other issues, the Inquiry was to examine the role of Huawei in the UK's telecommunications infrastructure - and in particular to consider whether the lessons had been learned from the Committee's 2013 report on Foreign Involvement in the UK's Critical National Infrastructure, in which we originally reported our concerns.

The Committee has noted the recent press reporting on the Government's deliberations regarding a role for Huawei in the UK's 5G infrastructure. This is clearly a matter of very considerable Parliamentary and public interest, and the Committee will therefore now be prioritising this aspect of its Inquiry.

14:47, 25 April 2019

6 March 2019

The Committee has agreed that its next Inquiry will be into national security issues relating to China.

12:06, 6 March 2019

22 November 2018

The Committee has today published its the following two reports and a press release:

15:01, 22 November 2018

19 November 2018

The Committee will be publishing two Reports - "The 2017 Attacks: What needs to change?" and "Annual Report 2017 - 2018" - on Thursday 22 November.

Links to both Reports will be available from this website shortly after publication on the 22nd.

15:38, 19 November 2018

15 October 2018

On Friday 12 October 2018 the Committee sent its Report, 'The 2017 Attacks: What needs to change?’, 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 next month.

16:31, 15 October 2018

18 July 2018

The Committee has today published its report on Diversity and Inclusion in the UK Intelligence Community and has also issued its 'Diversity and Inclusion in the UK Intelligence Community' Press release.

13:14, 18 July 2018

28 June 2018

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published the following two reports, and has also issued a press release in relation to each report:

14:36, 28 June 2018

26 June 2018

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP, has today issued the following statement:

"I have seen the allegations this morning that the US has censored our report on detention and rendition which we will be publishing on Thursday. I am - exceptionally - making a comment ahead of the publication of the reports because I believe that otherwise we risk attention being distracted from the key headlines in those reports.

The first point to make is that the Committee has agreed to redact just one word in over 300 pages to meet a US security concern. On Thursday I will happily point you to where those asterisks are in the report and you can see for yourself that it is not a central issue, nor a controversial issue. The Committee does not agree to redact material in its reports on grounds of embarrassment to anyone. So I can assure you that the US has not made wholesale redactions to the reports, as suggested.

The second point I wish to make is that I find it unacceptable that the Government has briefed the media on our reports before they are published. These are not the Government's reports to trail or leak as they wish. The Government is, exceptionally, given sight of the reports ahead of publication so that they can check there is nothing in them which would harm UK national security. The draft reports should have been kept on an exceptionally tight distribution within Government. It appears that that procedure has been abused in order to leak details of the reports, so as to draw the sting on Thursday.

I believe that the reports make a very strong statement, and I hope that attention will be rightly focused on that and there will be no further attempts to distract from it."

12:03, 26 June 2018

25 June 2018

The Committee will be publishing its two Reports - "Detainee Mistreatment and Rendition: 2001-2010" and "Detainee Mistreatment and Rendition: Current Issues" - on Thursday 28 June.

Links to both Reports will be available on this page shortly after 10am on the 28th.

12:46, 25 June 2018

14 June 2018

The Committee has today sent its Report, 'Diversity and Inclusion in the UK Intelligence Community', 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 next month.

15:03, 14 June 2018

10 May 2018

The Committee has today sent two Reports - "Detainee Mistreatment and Rendition: 2001-2010" and "Detainee Mistreatment and Rendition: Current Issues" - to the Prime Minister. These contain the findings and conclusions of the Committee's inquiry into detainee mistreatment and rendition.

In accordance with the Justice and Security Act 2013, the Prime Minister will now consider whether there is any information in the reports 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 reports next month.

10:16, 10 May 2018

20 December 2017

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published its Annual Report 2016-2017 and also issued its 'Annual Report 2016-2017' Press release.

10:29, 20 December 2017

23 November 2017

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) has met today for the first time in this Parliament and elected the Rt Hon. Dominic Grieve QC, MP as its Chairman. The Committee also discussed and set out its work priorities for the year ahead and this is detailed in the attached press release.

17:07, 23 November 2017

22 November 2017

The following motion was agreed in the House of Lords on Tuesday 21 November 2017:

That this House approves the nomination of Lord Janvrin and the Marquess of Lothian as members of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament.

17:08, 22 November 2017

17 November 2017

The following appeared on the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings record for yesterday (Thursday 16 November 2017):

  1. Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

    Ordered, That Richard Benyon, Ian Blackford, Caroline Flint, Mr Dominic Grieve, David Hanson, Mr Kevan Jones and Mr Keith Simpson be appointed to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under section 1 of the Justice and Security Act 2013.—(Michael Ellis.)


The following appeared on the House of Lords Order of Business for Tuesday 21 November 2017:

Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Evans of Bowes Park) to move that this House approves the nomination of Lord Janvrin and the Marquess of Lothian as members of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament.

10:36, 17 November 2017

27 April 2017

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today issued a press statement which summarises its work since the publication of its most recent Annual Report in July 2016.

16:00, 27 April 2017

26 April 2017

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published its UK Lethal Drone Strikes in Syria Report and also issued its 'UK Lethal Drone Strikes in Syria Report' Press release.

This Report examines the intelligence basis behind the UK lethal drone strike against Reyaad Khan, a British citizen, in Syria in August 2015.

09:59, 26 April 2017

17 March 2017

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP, has today issued the following statement:

"The Committee is aware of the allegations that the former President of the United States, Barack Obama, tasked GCHQ to 'wire tap' the now President of the United States, Donald Trump, during the 2016 US Presidential election.

First, I should make clear that the President of the United States is not able to task GCHQ to intercept an individual's communications.

Second, long-standing agreements between the Five Eyes countries means that the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand cannot ask each other to target each other's citizens or individuals that they cannot themselves target, or in any other way seek to circumvent their own or each other's legal and policy obligations.

Third, an individual can only be the target of interception by GCHQ under a warrant signed by a Secretary of State. Such warrants can only authorise action where it is necessary and proportionate for a valid national security purpose. It is inconceivable that those legal requirements could be met in the circumstances described.

I note GCHQ's public denial of the potentially damaging allegations against them. This was an unusual step by the Agency, but it clearly indicates the strength of feeling about this issue, and I echo that sentiment."

17:44, 17 March 2017

16 December 2016

The Committee has submitted its UK Lethal Drone Strikes in Syria Report to the Prime Minister.

In accordance with standard practice under the Justice and Security Act 2013, the Report will now be subject to a redactions process to prepare it for publication. The Committee expects that this process will be completed in the New Year.

15:23, 16 December 2016

21 October 2016

The following motion was agreed in the House of Commons yesterday:

"That Richard Benyon and Mr David Hanson be appointed to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under section 1 of the Justice and Security Act 2013 in place of Sir Alan Duncan who ceased in accordance with paragraph 1(2)(b) of Schedule 1 to that Act to be a member of the Committee when he became a Minister of the Crown and Mr George Howarth who has resigned as a member of the Committee in accordance with paragraph 1(3)(a) of Schedule 1 to that Act."

The current and previous lists of ISC members is available here.

11:00, 21 October 2016

5 July 2016

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published its 2015-2016 Annual Report covering the period between the appointment of the new Committee in September 2015 and June 2016.

11:04, 5 July 2016

9 June 2016

The Committee has today made a statement regarding the CPS announcement on Operation Lydd.

13:54, 9 June 2016

9 February 2016

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published its Report on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill and also issued its 'Report on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill' Press statement.

Today's report builds upon the ISC's major report published in March last year - Privacy and Security: A modern and transparent legal framework - which detailed all of the intrusive powers and capabilities available to the intelligence Agencies and which recommended significant changes to the legal framework and authorisation regimes governing their use.

10:29, 9 February 2016

14 January 2016

The Chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP, has written an open letter to the Chair of the Joint Committee on Human Rights, the Rt. Hon. Harriet Harman QC MP, clarifying the scope of the ISC’s inquiry into intelligence basis for the drone strike which killed Reyaad Khan in Syria on 21 August 2015.

12:47, 14 January 2016

4 November 2015

The Committee has today made a statement regarding the draft Investigatory Powers Bill.

14:22, 4 November 2015

29 October 2015

The Committee has today set out its work priorities for the coming months. Please see the Committee's statement for more details.

17:50, 29 October 2015

15 September 2015

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) has today elected the Rt Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP as its Chairman. Full details are contained in our 'Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament: Chairman elected' Press release.

The full membership of the ISC is therefore as follows:

The Rt Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP (Chair)
The Rt Hon. Sir Alan Duncan MP
The Rt Hon. George Howarth MP
The Rt Hon. the Lord Janvrin GCB GCVO
The Most Hon. the Marquess of Lothian QC PC
The Rt Hon. Fiona Mactaggart MP
The Rt Hon. Angus Robertson MP
The Rt Hon. Keith Simpson MP
The Rt Hon. Gisela Stuart MP

19:07, 15 September 2015

14 September 2015

The following motion was agreed in the House of Lords today:

"That this House approves the nomination of Lord Janvrin and the Marquess of Lothian as members of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament."

The current and previous lists of ISC members is available here.

11:55, 14 September 2015

10 September 2015

The following appeared on the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings record for yesterday (Wednesday 9 September 2015):

  1. Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

    Ordered, That Sir Alan Duncan, Mr Dominic Grieve, Mr George Howarth, Fiona Mactaggart, Angus Robertson, Mr Keith Simpson and Ms Gisela Stuart be appointed to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under Section 1 of the Justice and Security Act 2013.


The following appeared on the House of Lords Order of Business for Monday 14 September 2015:

Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Stowell of Beeston) to move that this House approves the nomination of Lord Janvrin and the Marquess of Lothian as members of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament.

11:56, 10 September 2015

9 September 2015

The following appeared today on the the House of Commons Order of Business for Wednesday 9 September 2015:

  1. INTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY COMMITTEE OF PARLIAMENT
    The Prime Minister


    That Sir Alan Duncan, Mr Dominic Grieve, Mr George Howarth, Fiona Mactaggart, Angus Robertson, Mr Keith Simpson and Ms Gisela Stuart be appointed to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under Section 1 of the Justice and Security Act 2013.

11:56, 9 September 2015

17 March 2015

Following publication of the Committee’s Report ‘Privacy and Security: A modern and transparent legal framework’ on 12 March 2015, Big Brother Watch wrote to the Committee regarding the evidence they gave to the Committee on 15 October 2014. The Committee has today responded to Big Brother Watch, enclosing the transcript of the original evidence. (A copy of Big Brother Watch’s letter of 13 March can be read here.)

17:35, 17 March 2015

12 March 2015

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published its Report 'Privacy and Security: A modern and transparent legal framework'.

This Report includes, for the first time in a single document, a comprehensive review of the full range of intrusive capabilities available to the UK intelligence Agencies. It contains an unprecedented amount of information about those capabilities, the legal framework governing their use, and the privacy protections and safeguards that apply. The Report also reveals the use of certain capabilities – such as Bulk Personal Datasets and Directions under the Telecommunications Act 1984 – for the first time. The Report represents a landmark in terms of the openness and transparency surrounding the Agencies’ work.

The Committee has also released its 'Privacy and Security: A modern and transparent legal framework' Press statement, and the 'Privacy and Security Inquiry: Opening Statement' from this morning's press conference.

12:14, 12 March 2015

5 March 2015

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today published a special report on Women in the UK Intelligence Community.

The Report considers recruitment policy and practice; maternity-related issues, childcare and flexible working; career and promotion prospects; and cultural and behavioural issues.

The Committee has also released a press statement on the special report on Women in the UK Intelligence Community.

10:19, 5 March 2015

24 February 2015

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) has released a statement today regarding the Chairmanship of the Committee for the remainder of this Parliament.

18:42, 24 February 2015

24 February 2015

The Chairman of the ISC, the Rt. Hon. Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has this morning issued the following statement: 

"None of the current controversy with which I am associated is relevant to my work as Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament.

However, I have today informed my colleagues that while I will remain a member of the Committee, I will step down from the Chairmanship.

The Committee is due to be dissolved in little over a month with the prorogation of Parliament for the forthcoming General Election.  The main substantive work which needs to be completed will be the publication of our Privacy and Security Report during March.

I do not want the work of the Committee and the publication of the Report to be, in any way, distracted or affected by controversy as to my personal position.  I have concluded, therefore, that it is better that this important work should be presided over by a new Chairman."

10:11, 24 February 2015

11 February 2015

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) has today released a statement on its investigation, announced on 17 December 2014, into redactions to the report of the US Select Committee on Intelligence.

13:28, 11 February 2015

17 December 2014

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today released a statement on its Inquiry into detainee treatment and rendition.

13:53, 17 December 2014

25 November 2014

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today laid before Parliament its Report on the intelligence relating to the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby.

11:01, 25 November 2014

21 November 2014

On Tuesday 25 November, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament will publish its Report on the intelligence relating to the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby. The Committee will be holding a press conference in Parliament at 11am on 25 November.

18:18, 21 November 2014

17 October 2014

On Thursday 23 October, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament will hold two further public evidence sessions as part of its Privacy and Security Inquiry. The Committee will hear first from Sir David Omand (11:15 - 12:00), and then from the Foreign Secretary, the Rt. Hon. Philip Hammond MP (13:00 - 14:00).

Both evidence sessions will be held in Portcullis House and are open to the public, with seats being available on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. They may be viewed through the link below:

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament: Thursday 23 October 2014, Start Time: 11.15am, End Time: 2.07pm

17:10, 17 October 2014

14 October 2014

As previously announced in the 'Privacy and Security Inquiry - Public Evidence Sessions' statement, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament will be holding a number of public evidence sessions this week as part of its Privacy and Security Inquiry. They may be viewed through the links below:

08:19, 14 October 2014

9 October 2014

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today announced a series of public evidence sessions in relation to its Inquiry into Privacy and Security, to be held on Tuesday 14, Wednesday 15 and Thursday 16 October 2014. Further details on the sessions and a list of witnesses can be found in the 'Privacy and Security Inquiry - Public Evidence Sessions' statement.

15:42, 9 October 2014

11 September 2014

On 19 December 2013, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) announced that it would investigate the issues highlighted in the Detainee Inquiry report published by Sir Peter Gibson. The Committee is now inviting written submissions from those who wish to contribute. Further details are provided in the 'Further Inquiry into the role of the UK Government and Security and Intelligence Agencies in relation to detainee treatment and rendition: Call for Evidence.'

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC), the Rt. Hon. Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, stated:

"The ISC has today reached a milestone in its investigation into the role of the UK Government and Security and Intelligence Agencies in relation to detainee treatment and rendition. The ISC will be considering the issues raised by Sir Peter Gibson in his interim report, and the adequacy of the current framework governing matters related to detainees. I strongly encourage participation from all those who have information to contribute."

11:14, 11 September 2014

8 May 2014

Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC), has today delivered a lecture at Wadham College, Oxford, entitled "Intelligence Agencies in the Internet Age: Public Servants or Public Threat?".

17:46, 8 May 2014

19 December 2013

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today issued a statement regarding to the publication of the Detainee Inquiry's report.

12:16, 19 December 2013

11 December 2013

On 17 October 2013, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament (ISC) announced that it would be broadening its inquiry into the laws which govern the intelligence agencies’ ability to intercept private communications. In addition to considering whether the current statutory framework governing access to private communications remains adequate, the Committee is also considering the appropriate balance between our individual right to privacy and our collective right to security.

The Committee is now inviting written submissions from those who wish to contribute to its Privacy and Security Inquiry. Further details are provided in the 'Privacy and Security Inquiry - Call for Evidence' statement.

14:55, 11 December 2013

7 November 2013

Following today's open evidence session, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has issued an uncorrected transcript of the evidence given by Sir Iain Lobban (Director, GCHQ), Mr Andrew Parker (Director General, MI5), and Sir John Sawers (Chief, MI6).

18:56, 7 November 2013

7 November 2013

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament is today holding its first Open Evidence Session. The witnesses are the three Heads of the UK intelligence Agencies:

  • Sir Iain Lobban, Director, GCHQ;
  • Mr Andrew Parker, Director General, MI5; and 
  • Sir John Sawers, Chief, MI6. 

The session will be broadcast on www.parliamentlive.tv from 14:00 and is expected to last approximately 90 minutes. It will feature a short time delay, as a security mechanism to allow the Committee to pause the broadcast if anything is mentioned which might endanger national security or the safety of those working for the Agencies. (A similar process was used during the public hearings for the Iraq Inquiry.)

The session may be viewed through the link below:

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament: Thursday 7 November 2013, Start Time: 2.01pm, End Time: 3.35pm

10:28, 7 November 2013

23 October 2013


Open Evidence Session

At 14:00 on Thursday 7 November, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament will be holding an Open Evidence Session with the three heads of the UK Intelligence Agencies:

  • Sir Iain Lobban, Director, GCHQ;
  • Mr Andrew Parker, Director General, Security Service; and
  • Sir John Sawers, Chief, Secret Intelligence Service.

This will be the Committee's first Open Evidence Session: it will be the first time the three heads of the Intelligence Agencies have appeared in public together to talk about their work.

The session will give an insight into the world of intelligence, and the work the Agencies do on behalf of the UK. It represents a very significant step forward in terms of the openness and transparency of the Agencies. The Committee will question the Agency Heads on the work of the Agencies, their current priorities and the threats to the UK. Among other things it will cover the terrorist threat, regional instability and weapons proliferation, cyber security and espionage. However, since this is a public session, it will not cover details of intelligence capabilities or techniques, ongoing operations or sub judice matters. The Committee questions the Agencies about these details in their closed sessions.

The session will be held on the Parliamentary estate and will last approximately an hour and a half. It will be broadcast on www.parliamentlive.tv.

The session will be broadcast on a short time delay. The time delay is a security mechanism to allow the Committee to pause the broadcast if anything is mentioned which might endanger national security or the safety of those working for the Agencies. A similar process was used during the public hearings for the Iraq Inquiry.

There will be a limited number of seats available in the meeting room itself. For security reasons, the Committee has agreed that for this first Open Session these seats will be available to full Parliamentary pass holders and a small number of print journalists only. A notification of the event has been posted on the parliamentary intranet and pass holders have been invited to apply for a seat, which will be allocated on a 'first come, first served' basis.

Media arrangements are being dealt with separately.

11:04, 23 October 2013

17 October 2013

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has today issued a statement regarding the Committee's forthcoming Inquiry into privacy and security.

09:10, 17 October 2013

17 July 2013

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has today issued a statement regarding GCHQ’s alleged interception of communications under the US PRISM Programme.

11:06, 17 July 2013

10 July 2013

The Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament has today laid its Annual Report 2012-2013 before Parliament. The Committee has also issued its 'Annual Report 2012-2013' Press release. The Government's formal response is expected to be published in the autumn.

11:07, 10 July 2013

7 June 2013

In response to media reports that GCHQ has been gathering data via a covert US Internet monitoring programme, the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has tonight issued the following statement:

"The Intelligence and Security Committee is aware of the allegations surrounding data obtained by GCHQ via the US Prism programme. The ISC will be receiving a full report from GCHQ very shortly and will decide what further action needs to be taken as soon as it receives that information."

23:13, 7 June 2013

6 June 2013

The Intelligence and Security Committee's report on 'Foreign involvement in the Critical National Infrastructure: The implications for national security' was published today.

17:31, 6 June 2013

5 February 2013

The Intelligence and Security Committee has published its Report 'Access to communications data by the intelligence and security Agencies'. It was published by means of a Written Ministerial Statement by the Prime Minister. The Committee has also issued its 'Access to communications data by the intelligence and security Agencies' Press release.

11:11, 5 February 2013

11 December 2012

The Intelligence and Security Committee has completed its inquiry into the use of communications data by the intelligence and security Agencies.  A full report containing classified material has been sent to the Prime Minister, and the Committee intends to publish as much of this as possible within the next few weeks.  In the meantime, and to coincide with the report of the Parliamentary Joint Committee that has been conducting pre-legislative scrutiny on the Government's draft Communications Data Bill, the ISC is today publishing the conclusions of its investigation.

08:51, 11 December 2012

12 July 2012

The Intelligence and Security Committee’s Annual Report 2011-2012 was laid before Parliament today by the Prime Minister. The Committee has issued its 'Annual Report 2011-2012' Press release. The Government's formal response is expected to be published in the autumn.

09:44, 12 July 2012

14 June 2012

Following the publication of the Government's draft Communications Data Bill earlier today, the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has issued the following statement:

“The Government has today published a draft Communications Data Bill which aims to update the current legislation that allows public bodies – including the intelligence and security Agencies and the police – to access information relating to communications data.  The Bill will now be subject to pre-legislative scrutiny by a Joint Committee of Parliament.  Given the importance of communications data to the work undertaken by the intelligence Agencies, the ISC has begun its own investigation into this area.  We will take evidence and examine the rationale behind the proposals and how rigorous the safeguards are to ensure the privacy of individuals.”

12:46, 14 June 2012

27 March 2012

The Chairman of the ISC, Sir Malcolm Rifkind, has issued the attached statement in relation to the Government's Green Paper on Justice and Security on behalf of the Committee.

12:46, 27 March 2012

18 January 2012

Following today's announcement by the Secretary of State for Justice regarding the Detainee Inquiry, the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has issued the statement below:

"On 5 September 2011, the ISC announced that it would be considering allegations made about the relationship between the UK security and intelligence Agencies and the Libyan security services, including both the nature and extent of the UK-Libya intelligence-sharing relationship and the rendition of Libyan nationals.

The Committee will, at its meeting tomorrow, be considering the implications of today’s statement on the Detainee Inquiry by the Secretary of State for Justice for its own investigation of rendition issues – bearing in mind the ongoing police investigations. 

The Committee’s investigation of the UK’s wider intelligence relationship with the Libyans (an issue which did not fall within the scope of the Detainee Inquiry) will continue."

13:01, 18 January 2012

7 December 2011

The ISC has written to the Prime Minister's National Security Adviser in response to the Government's Green Paper on Justice and Security. A copy of the letter is attached.

12:35, 7 December 2011

19 October 2011

The Green Paper on Justice and Security was laid before Parliament today by the Secretary of State for Justice. The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has issued the following statement:

"I strongly welcome the publication today of the Government’s Green Paper on Justice and Security.

The risk of our courts disclosing foreign intelligence material, which allies had presumed to be shared in confidence, is extremely concerning. This undermines the ‘control principle’ – a key facet of intelligence sharing relationships – and risks damaging our national security. Additional protection for intelligence material is urgently needed. Yet it is also crucial, in the interests of justice, that the courts have access to all the relevant material in forming their judgments. Striking the right balance between keeping secrets secret and ensuring fairness in our courts is at the heart of this important consultation. The Intelligence and Security Committee will examine the Government’s proposals in detail, and respond in due course.

The Green Paper also contains proposals for reform of the oversight arrangements for the UK intelligence community. I am pleased that the Government has accepted the vast majority of the Intelligence and Security Committee’s own proposals in its Green Paper published today. This is a strong endorsement of our desire to modernise and strengthen parliamentary oversight of the intelligence community in this country. If implemented in full, the ISC will become a Committee of Parliament with greater authority, effectiveness, resources and credibility. It will significantly enhance oversight of the United Kingdom intelligence community in a manner in which Parliament and the public can have full confidence. These are significant reforms which I hope will earn widespread support."

Copies of the Green Paper and the Committee's Press release are attached.

15:47, 19 October 2011

12 October 2011

The Government's Response to the Intelligence and Security Committee’s Annual Report for 2010-2011 was laid before Parliament today by the Prime Minister.

13:19, 12 October 2011

5 September 2011

The Chairman of the ISC, Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, has issued the following statement on behalf of the Committee:

“The Intelligence and Security Committee is considering allegations made about the relationship between the UK security and intelligence Agencies and the Libyan security services. The Committee has requested clarification from the Agencies as to the nature and extent of intelligence-sharing with the Libyan security services, and the rendition of Libyan nationals.”

17:09, 5 September 2011

13 July 2011

The Intelligence and Security Committee’s Annual Report 2010-2011 was laid before Parliament today by the Prime Minister. The Report covers the whole range of the Agencies’ activities including matters such as the 2010 Spending Review, cyber security and the Olympics. The Committee has also this year conducted a root-and-branch review of its role, structure, remit and powers. The Report therefore also covers our proposals for reform of the Intelligence and Security Committee, to provide more effective, credible and transparent oversight of the UK intelligence community.

The Committee has also issued its 'Annual Report 2010-2011' Press release. It is expected that the Government will publish its formal response in the autumn.

10:59, 13 July 2011

7 July 2011

The Committee has today sent its 2010-2011 Annual Report to the Prime Minister. Publication of the Report is a matter for the Prime Minister.

00:37, 7 July 2011

16 November 2010

The Chairman has today delivered the attached speech to the Royal United Services Institute conference on Intelligence Oversight in the UK.

16:08, 16 November 2010

6 July 2010

The Prime Minister has today announced the appointment of the Rt. Hon. Sir Malcolm Rifkind, MP as Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee. The remaining eight Members of the Committee will be appointed in due course.

13:58, 6 July 2010

12 April 2010

On 5 March 2010, the ISC sent its Review of the Government's Draft Guidance on Handling Detainees to the Prime Minister. It was intended that the Report would be published, along with the finalised Guidance, before the debate in the House on 18 March. In the intervening period however the Foreign Secretary sought an opportunity to discuss further with us some of the issues in our Report before it was published. That discussion has now taken place, and the Committee has today sent a letter to the Prime Minister reflecting the supplementary evidence which he and the Home Secretary provided. The letter will form an addendum to our Report when it is published in order to provide a full account of the Committee's deliberations and conclusions on the draft Guidance.

13:57, 12 April 2010

18 March 2010

The Intelligence and Security Committee’s Annual Report 2009-2010 was laid before Parliament today by the Prime Minister. The Committee has issued its 'Annual Report 2009-2010' Press release.

The Government's Response is here.

13:57, 18 March 2010

11 March 2010

The Intelligence and Security Committee’s Annual Report 2008-2009 was laid before Parliament today by the Prime Minister. The Committee has also issued its 'Annual Report 2008-2009' Press release.

The Government's Response is here.

13:57, 11 March 2010

5 March 2010

The Intelligence and Security Committee has today sent its Annual Report 2009-2010 and Review of the Guidance on Detainees to the Prime Minister. Publication is a matter for the Prime Minister, however the Committee has made clear that they expect this to take place as soon as possible.

13:57, 5 March 2010

19 February 2010

The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee has today written the attached open letter in reply to Human Rights Watch.

13:56, 19 February 2010

16 December 2009

The Intelligence and Security Committee has sent its 2008-2009 Annual Report to the Prime Minister. Publication is a matter for the Prime Minister.

13:56, 16 December 2009

24 November 2009

On 18 November, the Cabinet Office provided the Intelligence and Security Committee with the Government's guidance for the intelligence and security Agencies and the military, regarding the detention and interviewing of detainees overseas. The Committee has previously expressed its disappointment at the delay in providing it with the guidance (eight months). We have been told that this delay was due to the complex legal nature of these issues, and the need to consolidate previously separate guidance into one version. The Committee will consider the material, take further evidence and seek independent legal advice, before reporting our findings to the Prime Minister.

13:56, 24 November 2009

16 September 2009

On 18 March 2009 the Prime Minister made a Written Ministerial Statement on Detainees. He said:

“we will publish our guidance to intelligence officers and service personnel about the standards that we apply during the detention and interviewing of detainees overseas once it has been consolidated and reviewed by the Intelligence and Security Committee. It is right that Parliament and the public should know what those involved in interviewing detainees can and cannot do. This will put beyond doubt the terms under which our agencies and service personnel operate…. In order to ensure that our systems are robust and to be certain that any lessons have been understood, I have asked the Intelligence and Security Committee to consider any new developments and relevant information, since their 2005 Report on Detention (Cm 6469) and their 2007 Report on Rendition (Cm 7171), building on the follow-up work that they have already undertaken.”

By way of clarification, the Cabinet Office confirmed that they would consolidate the guidance before submission to us.

Despite repeated requests, this guidance has still not been provided by the Cabinet Office. Therefore we are not yet able to begin our investigation.

13:55, 16 September 2009

19 May 2009

The Intelligence and Security Committee has published its Review of the Intelligence on the London Terrorist Attacks on 7 July 2005. It was published by means of the attached Written Ministerial Statement. The Committee has also issued its 'Review of the Intelligence on the London Terrorist Attacks on 7 July 2005' Press release.

13:55, 19 May 2009

17 March 2009

The Committee has today issued its 'Alleged complicity of the UK security and intelligence Agencies in torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment' Press release.

13:55, 17 March 2009