As the nation’s security service, ASIO protects Australia and Australians from threats to their security. The Sydney 2000 Olympic Games was one of the largest security undertakings in ASIO’s 70+ year history. In October 2000, the then Attorney-General Daryl Williams and Minister for Defence John Moore called the Sydney Games the “safest Games in modern Olympic history”.
The 2000 Olympics was a major focus of ASIO’s work in 1999 and 2000. The threat of terrorism shaped ASIO’s approach to the security environment and underlined the importance of ASIO’s intelligence relationships. ASIO worked closely with policing, Commonwealth and international partners to ensure the Games ran safely.
ASIO provided assessment and forewarning of potential threats to the Olympic Games. In the lead up to and shortly after the Games ASIO:
- Completed approximately 157,000 security assessments on individuals accredited to the Games.
- Completed an intensive three year program of preparations for the security of the Games, with the Federal Olympic Security Intelligence Centre (FOSIC) activated on 1 May 2000.
- Produced 82 FOSIC situation reports, each addressing multiple security concerns.
- Issued 423 security assessments specifically related to Olympic security.
- Interviewed 57 individuals of specific security interest as part of a Preventative Interview Program to assist in the prevention of politically motivated violence.
- Established contact with 98 cultural communities to provide a channel of communications for them to raise any concerns relating to Olympics security, and to explain ASIO’s role.
In 2020, ASIO continues its critical role securing Australia and protecting its people.