The Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has released its annual report for 2020-21.
The Inspector-General (IGIS) provides independent oversight of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) and the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB).
“Our annual report this year shows how oversight of the intelligence and security agencies keeps evolving as they adapt and in some areas expand their activities,” says the IGIS, Brendan Horsley.
The report discusses significant issues that arose during the year as well as inquiries and reviews completed by the IGIS or currently under way.
“The matters we’ve examined this year range from how the NZSIS interacts with the Police, to the legal basis for the GCSB requesting data from its ‘Five Eyes’ partner agencies.
“A number of issues come back to the Intelligence and Security Act 2017, which is about to be reviewed. There is no doubt there are areas where it could be improved and we will assist the review where we can.
“We will also continue our contribution to public understanding of the intelligence agencies and their activities by reporting publicly on our work, as much as possible.”
“We currently have one inquiry and five reviews under way. In the past year we published unclassified reports on two reviews and a complaint investigation. We completed classified reports on other reviews which I anticipate reporting publicly in the year ahead. We also reviewed 77 warrants issued to the agencies and dealt with 19 complaints against them.”
The IGIS is required to certify in the Annual Report the extent to which the NZSIS and GCSB have sound compliance procedures and systems in place.
“This year’s report rates both agencies’ compliance systems as well developed across the five main areas we assess,” says Mr Horsley. “I’m pleased to note this is an improvement for the GCSB from last year, when it rated lower in one area due to shortcomings it has since acted on.”
The annual report is available at: www.igis.govt.nz/publications/annual-reports
Media contact: Alison Horwood, 021 636 416