Australian Signals Directorate

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Jump to: navigation, search
Australian Signals Directorate
Slogan: Reveal their secrets ... Protect our own
Agency overview
Formed 12 November 1947; 71 years ago (1947-11-12)
Jurisdiction Commonwealth of Australia
Headquarters Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Minister responsible
Parent agency Department of Defence

Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) (formerly: Defence Signals Directorate (DSD)) is an Australian government intelligence agency responsible for signals intelligence (SIGINT) and information security (INFOSEC). ASD was established in 1947.


According to its website,[1] ASD has two principal functions:

  • to collect and disseminate foreign signals intelligence;
  • to provide information security products and services to the Australian Government and its Defence Force.

Based in Canberra, at the Defence Headquarters at Russell Offices[2] it operates monitoring facilities at Kojarena, Western Australia and at Shoal Bay, Northern Territory, which are believed to be part of the ECHELON system. It may also play a role in Pine Gap.

Under the 1948 UKUSA agreement, ASD's intelligence is shared with its foreign partner agencies:

Electronic warfare operators in the Royal Australian Corps of Signals work closely with the Australian Signals Directorate. 7 Signal Regiment (Electronic Warfare) at Borneo Barracks, Cabarlah, Queensland is associated with ASD.


The ASD operates at least three receiving stations:

These stations contribute signals intelligence for many Australian Government bodies, as well as the wider UKUSA partners. The ASD is also presumed to maintain a workforce at Pine Gap in central Australia.[citation needed]

In addition, it has been reported that many Australian embassies and overseas missions also house small facilities which provide a flow of signals intelligence to ASD.[4]


The Directorate has operated under a number of different names since its founding:

  • 1947 – Defence Signals Bureau established within the Department of Defence
  • 1949 – Changes name to Defence Signals Branch
  • 1964 – Changes name to Defence Signals Division
  • 1978 – Changes name to Defence Signals Directorate
  • 2013 – Changes name to Australian Signals Directorate[5]

See also

Other Countries


  1. "About DSD: DSD Defence Signals Directorate". 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "History: DSD Defence Signals Directorate". 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 Dorling, Philip (1 November 2013). "Listening post revealed on Cocos Islands". Canberra Times.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Dorling, Philip (31 October 2013). "Exposed: Australia's Asia spy network". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2 November 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "2013 Defence White Paper: Renaming the Defence Signals Directorate and the Defence Imagery and Geospatial Organisation" (Press release). Minister for Defence. 3 May 2013. Retrieved 2 September 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links