Who we are

The New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) is a civilian government agency which contributes to New Zealand’s safety and security.  NZSIS provides government with intelligence and security advice which seeks to ensure New Zealand’s people and interests remain safe.  NZSIS works closely with other government agencies, international partners and the wider community to defend and enhance New Zealand’s security, reputation, economic well-being and way of life.

NZSIS staff come from a wide cross-section of New Zealand society and perform a variety of roles.  They include intelligence officers, analysts, linguists, technology experts and other specialists at NZSIS headquarters in Wellington.  NZSIS also has regional offices in Auckland and Christchurch, and some staff based overseas.

Rebecca Kitteridge is the current Director of the NZSIS.

What we do

NZSIS undertakes a range of functions relevant to New Zealand's security.  These include:

  • Investigating and reporting on matters relevant to New Zealand's security
  • Giving advice on protective security measures
  • Conducting enquiries and making recommendations on whether individuals should be granted security clearances
  • Making recommendations relevant to security relating to immigration and citizenship matters
  • Collecting foreign intelligence

It is not a function of NZSIS to enforce measures for security.

NZSIS investigates and works to counter a range of threats to New Zealand's security.  These threats can originate both within and outside New Zealand, and include threats from:

  • Terrorism and violent extremism
  • Espionage
  • Foreign interference
  • Sabotage
  • Subversion

History

NZSIS was established in 1956 as the New Zealand Security Service.  Until then, apart from a brief period during the Second World War, national security had been handled by the New Zealand Police.

In 1969, the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Act gave the now-NZSIS a legislative mandate to protect New Zealand from threats of espionage, sabotage and subversion.  In 1977, this definition of security was expanded to include protecting against acts of terrorism.

In 1996 and 1999, further amendments to the NZSIS Act extended NZSIS’s role to include:

  • Making recommendations relevant to security relating to immigration and citizenship matters
  • Conducting enquiries and making recommendations on whether individuals should be granted security clearances
  • Giving advice on protective measures relevant to security

NZSIS holds historic records about national security matters dating back as far as 1919.  These are progressively being transferred to Archives New Zealand.