Security checks by the National Security Authority (NSA) – Regulations and organisation

general assembly on April 28, 2022

The NSA assesses through security checks whether the exercise of a function or access to a location implies risks for security, the State’s fundamental interests, public order or the physical integrity of other persons present. The assessment is based on existing data in data banks listed by law and belonging to the Federal Police, the State Security (civil intelligence service) and the General Intelligence and Security Service (military intelligence service), referred to as "the screening services". The NSA is a collegial authority that notably consists of the aforesaid screening services. Its secretariat is provided by the Belgian Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Due to changes in European regulations (for the aviation sector) and the extension of security checks to other sectors of activity, the number of requests for security checks submitted to the NSA is expected to increase significantly. The Belgian Court of Audit noted that the regulations on security checks, the administrative structure and working methods of the NSA could be improved, so as to guarantee the consistent, efficient and high-quality performance or issue of security checks, security advice and certificates by the NSA.