National Intelligence Community agencies work with a wide variety of partners internationally and within Australia to deliver intelligence outcomes and protect our national security.
Agencies draw on partners’ expertise and share information with them in a wide variety of contexts. This includes working with academia, businesses, civil society, individuals, different levels of government within Australia and with international partners. Our customers include the Prime Minister and the National Security Committee of Cabinet, policy-makers, law enforcement and the Australian Defence Force.
The National Intelligence Community and the Australian Defence Force work closely to keep our nation secure and deployed personnel safe. An important part of the Community's work is providing high-quality, timely intelligence to support Defence decision-making, enable the war fighter and protect Defence personnel and assets. We collect strategic and tactical intelligence that supports military operations and planning, personnel security in conflict areas and elsewhere, and counter-terrorism and force protection efforts.
The Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation and the Defence Intelligence Organisation (both of which are part of the Defence Intelligence Group), along with the Australian Signals Directorate, are located within the Defence portfolio. These three agencies provide critical support to Australian defence operations but are not the only parts of the National Intelligence Community that work closely with Defence personnel and provide support to military operations.
State and territory governments and law enforcement
The National Intelligence Community works closely with state and territory governments and law enforcement agencies on a range of issues. We have robust mechanisms to facilitate collaboration and information-sharing, particularly on terrorism, foreign interference and the protection of critical infrastructure.
We work with counterpart intelligence agencies in other countries to collect and share information on common and transnational issues that affect all parties, such as terrorism, cybercrime and weapons proliferation. These relationships are mutually beneficial: they augment Australia’s intelligence collection and can help develop our regional partners’ capabilities to better pursue mutual threats.
Our longest-standing intelligence collaboration is with our Five Eyes partners. This grouping is comprised of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. The alliance developed out of World War II-era agreements between the United Kingdom and United States to share signals intelligence. In 1955, the arrangement was extended to Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. Cooperation among the Five Eyes delivers significant benefits for Australia and the National Intelligence Community across all our missions, including counter-terrorism, counter-proliferation, cyber and regional challenges, and helps provide our nation with global intelligence coverage.
Partnerships beyond government
The National Intelligence Community works with partners across Australia, including private sector organisations, universities, think tanks and community groups. We frequently work with partners to fund, shape and deploy cutting-edge science, technology and research into future capabilities. You can find out more about how the Cyber and Critical Intelligence Centre supports this work.