How can citizens help SOA?
Experience of many security and intelligence, and police agencies in the world stresses the critical importance of conscientious, observant and self-protecting citizens’ behavior.
SOA voice mail number +385 1 3772222 is open for citizens' reports concerning any possible threats to national security and interests of the Republic of Croatia. The Security and Intelligence Agency guarantees complete anonymity to citizens reporting such information. If the SOA should assess that the citizens' information is of interest to the national security of the Republic of Croatia, in order to verify the authenticity of the information, the citizens will be contacted by the SOA staff (provided they left their identification data, a contact telephone number or e-mail address). In this respect, note that any misuse, i.e. reporting of false information, is subject to sanctions defined by the positive legal regulations of the Republic of Croatia.
How do citizens know when they are speaking to an authorized SOA agent?
Every authorized SOA officer has an official ID card which is used for identification while performing regular activities, and it should be shown at the request made by a citizen. The ID card has a visible label which reads “Official ID Card”, a card number, officer’s photograph and full name.
Why does SOA “tap” telephones?
"Tapping", or secret surveillance of telecommunication services, activities or traffic, as specified by the Security and Intelligence System Actrepresents a specific method of gathering data, which is implemented by almost every security and intelligence agency and police department in the world. Since it infringes on constitutional human rights and fundamental liberties, this procedure falls within the exceptional methods of gathering data, the use of which, depending on the legal arrangements of each country, is more or less restricted. Croatia is no exception. Relevant Croatian laws stipulate that this method of gathering data may only be applied if data "can not be gathered in a different manner or if the gathering of said data would cause disproportional difficulties."
It is important to note that most of the data from its scope SOA gathers "routinely", i.e., through its daily contacts with citizens, by using public sources and insight into the records and databases of bodies of state authority, judicial government and legal persons.
Does SOA carry out surveillance of political parties, associations, NGOs, journalists, etc.?
Croatian Constitution guarantees the freedom of association, freedom of thought and speech, and especially the freedom of press and other media. Therefore, no one is to become the subject of interest for SOA or any other security and intelligence agency for the sole reason of being a member of a political party or an association, or for working in the branch of journalism.
Who supervises SOA’s operations and how?
The Croatian Parliament conducts the oversight of SOA directly and via the Parliamentary Committee for Domestic Policy and National Security as well as via the Council for the Civilian Oversight of Security and Intelligence Agencies. The Council for Civilian Oversight was established to monitor the legality of the work of the security services and to ensure civilian oversight over the application of measures of secret collection of data that limit the constitutional human rights and basic freedoms.
Oversight of the activities of SOA is also conducted by the Office of the National Security Council.
There are internal control mechanisms in the SOA, which facilitate the monitoring and the oversight over the legality of the performance of its structural units and employees.
In addition, if any citizen believes that actions performed by SOA have violated the law, he/she may, in accordance with the constitutional rights, file a complaint to the above-mentioned authorities or to the SOA, and is entitled to receive the adequate reply.