Intelligence and the Law in the United Kingdom

Ian Leigh

in The Oxford Handbook of National Security Intelligence

Published in print March 2010 | ISBN: 9780195375886
Published online September 2010 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Intelligence and the Law in the United Kingdom

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This article discusses the legal framework within which security and intelligence agencies operate in the United Kingdom. It first discusses the legislative charters of the three main agencies. Following the discussion on the legislative charters of the Security Service (M15), the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS or M16), and the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), the article discusses the accountability these three agencies to the ministers, Parliament, and the judiciary. The article concludes with a discussion on the significant impact of human rights standards upon the agencies's work and current and future trends.

Keywords: legal framework; security agencies; intelligence agencies; United Kingdom; legislative charters; Security Service; Secret Intelligence Service; Government Communications Headquarters; accountability; human rights standards

Article.  7703 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; International Relations

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