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INTRODUCTION The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) is responsible for safeguarding Canada against activities or persons who could pose a threat to national security. These threats include terrorists activities, espionage activities or foreign influenced activities in Canada. The CSIS is a civilian Service that gets its roots from the RCMP. While the Service has the ability to use very intrusive powers, it must balance these powers with the rights and freedoms of persons living in a democratic society. This paper will outline the duties CSIS performs and why Canada needs a domestic security intelligence service.

BRIEF HISTORY Canada did not always have a civilian security intelligence service like the CSIS. The first sign that Canada needed an organization or agency to collect intelligence was during the late 1930's between the world wars. It was the RCMP who first assumed this role in 1939 when there was a very small number of RCMP officers involved in monitoring threats to national security.

It was not until 1945 with the defection of Igor Gouzenko a Russian cipher clerk did the Canadian government realize the extent of espionage operations going on in Canada. It was from the information provided by Gouzenko that the government realized the extent of espionage activities taking place in Canada. It showed that the Russians were interested in stealing military, scientific and technological information by whatever means possible. Just as the Second World War was winding down the "Cold War" was just beginning for Canada and other western countries around the world. The 1960's provided new challenges for the RCMP which had created a new section to deal with security intelligence issues. This section became known as the RCMP Security Service. These new challenges included domestic political violence in the form of the Front de liberation (FLQ) in Quebec. The...