About the office for security and counter-terrorism

Responsibility for counter-terrorism sits within the office for security and counter-terrorism (OSCT), which is part of the Home Office. OSCT provides strategic direction to the UK’s work to counter the threat from terrorism.

Our primary objective is to protect the public from terrorism by working with others to develop and deliver the UK’s counter-terrorism strategy, CONTEST.

To achieve this, we coordinate the activities of many agencies and government departments. We also have direct responsibility for certain aspects of the counter-terrorist strategy.

We report to the Home Secretary Theresa May, and the parliamentary under secretary for crime and security James Brokenshire.

Our responsibilities

The OSCT’s main responsibilities are to:

  • support the Home Secretary and other Ministers in directing and implementing CONTEST – the government’s strategy for countering terrorism
  • deliver aspects of this strategy directly, through legislation, guidance and funding
  • set the strategic government response to terrorism-related crises through the Cabinet Office briefing rooms (COBR) mechanism
  • manage the Home Secretary’s statutory relationship with the Security Service
  • manage the Olympic and Paralympic safety and security programme for the London 2012 Games.

We also oversee the administration of:

Contact us

We would not be able to carry out our crucial role in national security without the support, contribution and participation of many others.

To contact OSCT, please email us at public.enquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk

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