An inspection of the National Crime Agency’s criminal intelligence function

Published on: 14 July 2020

Publication types: National Crime Agency

Police Forces: National Crime Agency


HMICFRS has a statutory duty to carry out inspections of the National Crime Agency (NCA). Following an inspection we must report to the Home Secretary on the efficiency and effectiveness of the agency.

In our sixth NCA inspection, we examined its effectiveness at meeting one of its two core responsibilities, the criminal intelligence function.

The aim was to answer the question: How well does the NCA discharge its criminal intelligence function? This included inspecting its:

  • current capabilities;
  • resourcing;
  • alignment with the Serious and Organised Crime Strategy and the National Strategic Assessment;
  • ability to provide a single, authoritative, strategic assessment of the threat from serious and organised crime; and
  • compliance with national intelligence standards and existing legislation.

The report below sets out the findings of this inspection.

Get the report

An inspection of the National Crime Agency’s criminal intelligence function (PDF document)


In March 2020 we suspended our inspection activity to enable forces and fire and rescue services to focus on dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. We deferred this report’s publication as part of this suspension. HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary Sir Thomas Winsor comments in detail on this as part of his annual assessment of policing, published on 2 July 2020. Our findings in this report are based on evidence we collected before the pandemic was declared. Care should be taken if seeking to make links between our findings and police performance during the lockdown.

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