The Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), commonly known as MI6 (Military Intelligence Section 6), is the foreign intelligence-gathering agency of the United Kingdom. Due to its similarity to the CIA, its activities often cross over the agency's and the two work in collaboration on matters of mutual concern.
Known Members in the Show
- Alistair Wesley: former agent (“Critical”)
- John Greer: former agent (“A House Divided”)
- Blackwood: Greer's former boss; KGB mole; executed by Greer
- Oleg Luski: double agent working for MI6 and KGB; captured by Greer; released after Greer learnt his boss works for KGB
- Jacob: assists Greer in capturing Luski; killed by Luski in a shootout
As of the first World War and through the second World War, the British secret services were divided into 19 military intelligence (MI) units, each with a specific charge. Best known of these are the Security Service (MI5), which handles domestic counter-intelligence and security, and the Secret Intelligence Service (MI-6), which provides foreign intelligence to the British government. Although MI6 largely handles foreign intelligence, its charge is protection of British security home and abroad.
Historically, MI6 recruited from Britain's most illustrious universities, including Cambridge and Oxford, where it had spotters placed among the faculty. Desirable candidates tended to be intelligent, well-educated, from a monied background and at ease in high-level social situations, so they could blend into diplomatic circles without question, and gather intelligence not with hidden cameras and lock picks, but with conversation.
Along with Government Communication Headquarters (GCHQ) and Defence Intelligence (DI), they fall under the supervision of the Joint Intelligence Committee and Foreign Secretary William Hague. MI6 was so secret that its existence was not officially acknowledged until 1994.