Australia’s home affairs secretary says state security must be ‘ubiquitous without being oppressive’

The head of Australia’s home affairs department contends security in 2020 is no longer a matter of protection or survival, but increasingly a shared societal responsibility – a question of “how we should band together and pool our capacities for living”.

a man wearing glasses and looking at the camera: Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP

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Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP

Mike Pezzullo, the high-profile and periodically controversial head of Peter Dutton’s mega department, used a university lecture on Tuesday evening to float his concept of “the extended state” as a relevant construct for managing contemporary threats.

The “extended state”, Pezzullo told the National Security College at the Australian National University, was “a networked and dynamic conception of security which comprehends sectors across society and the economy”.

Pezzullo said the concept was comprised of public institutions in the executive analysing risks and threats and deploying operational capacity – the “vital centre” as he put it.

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