Mark Collins – Canada Now Has a “National Fisheries Intelligence Service”

With a staff of 70. From Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s “Report on Plans and Priorities 2015-16“–one wonders how much access to high-grade intelligence the new organization will have:


The National Fisheries Intelligence Service collects and analyzes all-source information and produces intelligence reports to facilitate knowledgeable and informed decision making. This program provides advice about aspects of operations to decision makers. As the Compliance and Enforcement program evolves to an intelligence-led organization, accurate intelligence gathering and an ability to establish priorities and action plans will control, reduce and mitigate threats and risks. Establishing an intelligence model as a core business practice within the Compliance and Enforcement Program [webpage here] will shift its resources from crisis response to strategically focussing on areas of greatest risk and ensure maximum program effectiveness [more here].

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

Planned Spending
Planned Spending
Planned Spending
1,997,909 1,997,909 1,997,909

Human Resources (full-time equivalents)

2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
70.1 70.1 70.1

Performance Measurement

Expected Result Performance Indicator Target Date to be Achieved
Progress in implementing a National Fisheries Intelligence Service that provides intelligence to decision makers in support of compliance and enforcement priority setting.  The threat-risk assessments provided by National Fisheries Intelligence Service allow Conservation and Protection Branch to strengthen our contribution to maritime security and aid in detecting and combatting of organized crime, fraud and collusion in the fishery (domestic and international) and other forms of non-compliance Percentage of Intelligence-driven threat-risk assessments disseminated to enforcement operations for strategic or tactical tasking and coordination Target to be established using 2015-16 data March 2018

Here is a “Privacy Impact Assessment on the National Fisheries Intelligence Service (NFIS)”. One trusts this new DFO unit will come under the purview of the new parliamentary committee that the government is establishing to review security and intelligence activities (assuming its members are aware of the NFIS).

Remember that the Canadian Coast Guard (under the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, scroll down a bit here) provides the vessels, e.g. see last para here, that carry Fishery Officers conducting enforcement operations. Those officers can “Carry and use firearms and other restricted and prohibited weapons “.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds


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