1 Lack of feedback
Uncertainty about relevance of information exchange
The audit also shows that the intelligence units in the Police Authority would like to see more feedback on the intelligence information given to the Swedish Security Service, to improve the Police Authority's ability to concentrate on what is relevant. The Swedish NAO's view is that more feedback from the Swedish Security Service, albeit on an aggregated level, could help to strengthen Police Authority's knowledge, and also contribute to ensuring that the Swedish Security Service receives a relevant inflow of information. This is particularly important as the inflow of information to the Swedish Security Service is ever increasing.
2 Different access rights for collaborators
Lower effectiveness of data exchange
The Police Authority has a data collection about violent extremism. The Swedish Security Service has access to it, but cannot add its own information to it. Instead, the Police Authority itself enters information from the Swedish Security Service's regional intelligence picture in various internal systems. The Swedish NAO considers that a more effective process would have been if the Swedish Security Service could have entered information itself in this data collection. Given that the Swedish Security Service has not found legal conditions for being able to work in this way, the Swedish NAO nevertheless regards it as positive that the agencies have developed a way of sharing the Swedish Security Service's intelligence with the Police Authority.
3 Different organisational patterns at regional level
The Swedish Security Service's regional sections work from central instructions, and all analysis and assessment of intelligence information is carried out centrally. However, the Police Authority's regional intelligence units work both with analysis and assessment. The consequence of the agencies' different forms of organisation at regional level is that in the day-to-day interaction the Police Authority's regional intelligence units do not always have time to get a timely response, since the Swedish Security Service's regional section needs to wait for centrally issued instructions. Urgent cases are also to be handled centrally by the Swedish Security Service, which it is stated leads to lack of synchronisation regionally.
Overall, the view of the Swedish NAO is that this imbalance in regional discretion risks leading to delays in regional interaction.
There are two agencies with clear roles and responsibilities for preventing and combating terrorism and violent extremism: The Swedish Police Authority and the Swedish Security Service. The Swedish Security Service has the main responsibility in Sweden for fighting terrorism and other crimes that threaten national security. At the same time, the Police Authority is responsible for crime that may be associated with, butfall outside, the area of responsibility of the Swedish Security Service. To enable both agencies to perform their respective tasks effectively and obtain the best possible status report in their respective areas of operation there is a considerable need for cooperation between them. A central component of this cooperation is the exchange of intelligence information.
The Swedish NAO has audited whether the Police Authority and the Swedish Security Service share intelligence effectively to prevent and combat violent extremism and terrorism. The rationale for conducting this audit is the importance of these activities for maintaining public confidence in the judicial system.