Intelligence Services of the Czech Republic: Current Legal Status and Its Development

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Petr Zeman


Information & Security: An International Journal, Volume 30, Issue 2, p.67-84 (2014)


Czech Republic, Czechoslovakia, Intelligence governance, post-communist transition


An adequate understanding of the nature of intelligence services within the Czech society—including professional circles—is still lacking. Although a large amount of factual data about intelligence and the current Czech intelligence services is available, it is widely dispersed. The primary purpose of this work is to collect and present the best available data about the institutional status and legal position of Czech intelligence services, with the aim of serving as an introduction to their detailed study. The second purpose of this work, therefore, is to provide a better foundation for knowledgeable evaluation of the Czech intelligence services by both the professionals and the general public. This study is opened with a general introduction to intelligence services, which is followed by a brief recapitulation of recent history concerning the transformation of the security system of Czechoslovakia (before the partition) and the Czech Republic after 1989. The paper deals exclusively with the Czech intelligence services, in the strict sense of the word, and not with military reconnaissance or specialized police units.