ASIO T4 Protective Security

T4 provides protective security advice for Australian Government agencies. With the written approval of the Attorney-General, T4 can provide such services to state and territory governments, business enterprises and critical infrastructure owners, provided that a Commonwealth interest can be shown.

Protective Security Courses

ASIO-T4 Security Practitioners Course Security Zones

Course description

This four-day course covers the key elements of high Security Zones, as identified in the Australian Government Protective Security Policy Framework (PSPF), with a focus on the practical application of ASIO Technical Notes 1/15 Physical Security of Zones and 5/12 Physical Security of Zone 5 Areas and associated annexes.


This course aims to develop the skills of individuals who are seeking a comprehensive and practical understanding of the construction and management of high Security Zones.


Applications are subject to a comprehensive nomination process to ensure the limited spaces are utilised by those who have the most pressing need. Participants must have a minimum Baseline Clearance and acceptance of applications is at ASIO's discretion.

Entry is limited to:

  • Australian Government agency security personnel.
  • State or Territory Government agency security personnel who are required to apply the PSPF for the protection of Australian Government information.
  • Defence Industry Security Program (DISP) facility security officers with sponsorship from an Australian Government department or agency.
  • Consultants are not eligible to attend this course. Consultants that wish to attend training in the construction of PSPF Security Zones are encouraged to consider the SCEC Security Zone Consultant program.


  • Introduction to ASIO-T4 and the Security Construction and Equipment Committee (SCEC)
  • Threat environment
  • Construction security
  • Physical security and certification/accreditation requirements for Security Zones (including Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilities);
  • Security plans and procedures
  • Class A, B and C Secure Rooms
  • Overview of detectors (as applied in Security Zones)
  • Type 1 and Type 1A Security Alarm Systems
  • Protection of classified discussions
  • Destruction of official information
  • Security containers and combination changing
  • Security hardware, locking devices and keying systems


It is expected that course attendees have a basic understanding of security risk management principles and are familiar with the Australian Government PSPF.

Course dates

  • The 2020 program for the Security Practitioners Course has been suspended due to the evolving situation with COVID-19. Further advice will be provided once new dates can be established.  

*Courses are held in Canberra, ACT.


This course is $2 500 per person and includes catering and course supplies. There is no discount for multiple bookings.


Protective Security Risk Reviews

These involve a comprehensive review of security threats and the development of recommended protective security measures, using risk-based methodology. ASIO-T4 has direct access to threat-based risk information in the risk review process, so as to assess all known potential sources of security risks. Recommendations will typically include physical, electronic, administrative, and procedural security measures to manage the risk.

Protective Security Advice

ASIO-T4 provides an ongoing specific advisory service for Government clients, on how best to protect their people, information and physical assets. This advice is tailored to address individual and specific requirements.

Advice may include perimeter security, access control measures, CCTV, alarm systems, locks and other door hardware, advice on the construction of new buildings, security zone construction, guarding arrangements, security audits and administrative and personnel security.

ASIO-T4 also assists State and Territory governments and law enforcement agencies that provide counter-terrorism protective security advice to state and territory critical infrastructure.

Certification of Zone 5 Facilities

ASIO-T4 is the certification authority, nominated in the Australian Government PSPF, for the physical security certification of all facilities/zones where the compromise, loss of integrity or unavailability of the information would have a catastrophic business impact level. This includes facilities/zones holding and/or discussing Top Secret security classified information and facilities/zones that have a large aggregation of information at lower classifications. Re-certification is required at least every five years. Early consultation with ASIO-T4 is recommended to ensure new facilities have the appropriate level of security built in from the design stage.

Physical Security Certification of Outsourced ICT Facilities

ASIO-T4 is responsible for certifying the physical security of Australian Signals Directorate Certified Gateway Service Provider facilities, intended for use by multiple Australian Government agencies as listed in the Business, Procurement and Asset Management Group, Department of Finance and Deregulation, Internet Gateway Reduction Program.

Technical Surveillance Counter Measures (TSCM)

ASIO-T4 offers technical surveillance countermeasures (TSCM) assistance to Australian Government departments and agencies to provide a level of assurance that highly classified or sensitive discussions and information are not subject to compromise through technical means – for example, through covert listening devices.

TSCM inspections are an important element of an appropriate protective security environment and must be supported by physical and procedural measures to ensure the integrity of an inspected area is maintained.


ASIO-T4 has developed a range of publications to assist in the application of the Protective Security Policy Framework.

  • ASIO Technical Notes – are minimum guidelines for developing security zones in line with the PSPF.
  • Security Equipment Guides – assist agencies when procuring a range of lower level security products. They contain advice on the selection and application of security products, including reference to Australian standards, best security practices, limitations of their use etc.
  • Protective Security Circulars – highlight current protective security issues and short to long term mitigations if applicable.

Publications are available from ASIO-T4 or on the Protective Security Policy community on GovTeams (access to the PSP community is for government personnel only - to gain access please contact the Attorney-General's Department at

ASIO-T4 has released a range of guides to assist security managers in protecting their people, property, assets and information. For example:

  • Critical infrastructure guide: Develop and review security plans.
  • Critical infrastructure guide: Selecting security systems and hardware.
  • Security manager guide: Detecting and responding to hostile reconnaissance and rehearsals in Australia.
  • Security manager guide: Protective security advice for heightened terrorism threat environments in Australia.

These publications are available from ASIO-T4, or are accessible by subscribers to ASIO's Outreach website.