The question of how far a state should authorise its agents to go in seeking and using secret intelligence is one of the big unresolved issues of public policy for democracies today. The tension between security and privacy sits at the heart of broader debates concerning the relationship between the citizen and the state. The public needs-and wants-protection from the very serious threats posed by domestic and international terrorism, from serious criminality, to
be safe in using cyberspace, and to have active foreign and aid policies to help resolve outstanding international problems. Secret intelligence is widely accepted to be essential to these tasks, and to be a legitimate function of the nation state, yet the historical record is that it also can pose
significant ethical risks.
Principled Spying lays out a framework for thinking about public policy in this area by clarifying the relationship between ethics and intelligence, both human and technical. In this book, intelligence expert Mark Phythian teams up with the former head of Britain's GCHQ signals and intelligence agency to try to resolve the knotty question of secret intelligence-and how far it should be allowed to go in a democratic society.
Sir David Omand GCB is a Visiting Professor in the War Studies Department, King's College London and at Sciences-Po, Paris and is an Honorary Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. He served for seven years on the UK Joint Intelligence Committee and was previously UK Intelligence and Security Coordinator, Permanent Secretary of the Home Office, Director of GCHQ (the UK Signals Intelligence and Cyber Security Agency) and before that Deputy Under Secretary of State for Policy in the Ministry of Defence. He has written extensively on security and intelligence matters. His first book, Securing the State was published by Hurst (UK) and Oxford University Press (US) in 2010. Mark Phythian is Professor of Politics in the School of History, Politics and International Relations at the University of Leicester. He is the author or editor of a number of books on intelligence themes, including: Intelligence Theory: Key Questions and Debates (edited with Peter Gill & Stephen Marrin; Routledge, 2008); Intelligence in an Insecure World (with Peter Gill; 2nd edition, Polity Press, 2012); and Understanding the Intelligence Cycle (Routledge, 2013); as well as numerous journal articles and book chapters. He is co-editor of the leading intelligence journal, Intelligence and National Security, a member of the editorial boards of the International Journal of Intelligence, Security and Public Affairs and the Journal of Intelligence History, an Associate Editor of Crime, Law and Social Change, and a Fellow of the UK Academy of Social Sciences.