Security Information Service (BIS)

Intelligence Service of the Czech Republic

Objectives, principles and values

The Security Information Service (BIS) protects the Czech Republic and its citizens against the most serious threats of the globalized world. It is responsible for collecting, gathering and evaluating information on threats to the security and strategic interests of the Czech Republic, to democracy and freedom. The role of the Service is to identify threats, issue early warnings and take steps eliminating the threats. In this respect its work differs from that of the police, who do not intervene before a criminal offense is committed. 

 

The Service is authorized to collect, gather, analyze and evaluate intelligence only in areas specified by Act No. 153/1994 Coll., on the Intelligence Services of the Czech Republic. The law specifies the following recipients of BIS findings: the Government and the President of the Czech Republic, who have the exclusive right to task the Service within lawful limits. 

 

The Service is committed to upholding democratic values, the Constitution and the law while respecting human rights and freedoms. When the Service is compelled to infringe on the rights and freedoms of citizens, it is done so only in compliance with strict, legally stipulated conditions. For example, no phone is ever tapped without the consent of the Chairman of the Panel of Judges of the respective High Court. The Service is strictly apolitical and does not serve individual political parties but the state as a whole. The Service has a transparent organizational structure and its compliance with human rights is overseen by a special parliamentary oversight body. The Service does not have the authority to detain, arrest, or interrogate any individual. It is authorized to collect information only within its powers and responsibilities.

 

In spite of the secret nature of its work, which is necessary for fulfilling the tasks which with it has been entrusted, the BIS is an intelligence service funded by the state, i.e. by taxpayers, who have the right to know what we do and how we work. As long as Act No. 412/2005 Coll., on the Protection of Classified Information and on Security Clearance is not violated, the BIS is not limited in its communication with the public. The Service is committed to open communication by responding to questions, providing comments, and by voluntarily publishing public annual reports. The BIS could hardly fulfill its objectives without the support of the public. Anyone believing they have useful and relevant information falling within the areas of BIS interest can contact the Service. The BIS highly appreciates any help with which it is (or has been) provided in protecting democracy, freedom and national security.

 

 

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