Boasting an inheritance of glorious traditions, the Defence Intelligence Service (DIS) nowadays has a clearly defined status under the Military Intelligence Act and the Defence and Armed Forces Act: it is an organization directly reporting to the Minister of Defence and dedicated to the conduct of strategic military intelligence. 

   The dynamics of the security environment and the wide range of commitments undertaken by the Republic of Bulgaria within the framework of NATO and the EU have assigned the DIS an important role in the national and allied security and defence system. Ensuring early detection and warning on national security risks and threats, the DIS provides identical strategic information to the President of the Republic of Bulgaria, the Speaker of the National Assembly, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence. The Chief of Defence is added to the list of recipients when information on military, politico-military and military-technical issues is disseminated. Besides, users of DIS-collected information are the Bulgarian contingents deployed abroad, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, as well as other ministries and state institutions with responsibilities in the field of foreign policy and national security and defence.

   Historic facts show that in many countries good intelligence accompanies might and prosperity and underpins crucial decision-making. While a lot of characteristics of military intelligence have changed over the years since its establishment, the most important ones – service to the Homeland and safeguarding national security, defence and interests – have remained unchanged.

   Today the leadership and all personnel of the DIS are fully aware of their crucial responsibility to perform assigned functions and missions. The military intelligence officers handle heavy, sometimes critical workloads in a situation of abruptly changing international security environment, newly emerging risk and threats to Bulgaria and a growing number of requests for information from domestic and international-exchange users. The DIS provides an intelligence product that keeps the state institutions informed of regional tendencies, developments and consequences thereof for Bulgaria and contributes to the formulation of national security and defence policies. An important aspect of the DIS activity is the preparation of general analyses of global and regional issues and the supply of intelligence expertise for the purposes of defence and operations planning

   The DIS puts considerable effort in ensuring continuous intelligence support for the Bulgarian military service members involved in operations and missions abroad, thus satisfying a major requisite for personnel security and efficient task performance.

   The DIS cooperates actively with the Bulgarian security and law-enforcement services to deal with national security issues and challenges arising from the increased migration and refugee flows into Bulgaria, to prepare joint documents and to formulate national positions on intelligence within NATO.

   The DIS has established a reputation of a reliable partner and contributor of important information to the NATO and EU governing bodies and has earned the respect of the intelligence structures within the two alliances.

   The DIS exchanges intelligence, effects operational cooperation and conducts joint operations with partner services in the NATO and EU Member States and with the intelligence bodies of the two alliances.

   The DIS performs a wide spectrum of activities including:

  • conduct of strategic intelligence by using human resources and technical means;

  • performance of analyses and development of forecasts;

  • participation in operations abroad;

  • implementation of military diplomacy;

  • ensuring the security of classified information;

  • interaction with Bulgarian state institutions and intelligence and security services;

  • cooperation with NATO and EU intelligence bodies and with partner services.

   The accession of the Republic of Bulgaria to NATO in 2004 has confronted Bulgarian military intelligence with new challenges arising above all from the Alliance’s extension of intelligence interest into crisis regions outside its area of responsibility. Additional action capabilities have been built to enable intelligence support for operations in these regions and for collective security.

   The DIS is Bulgaria’s national representative in key committees and working groups formulating NATO/EU policies and activities in the intelligence field. The Director of the DIS is a member of the NATO Military Intelligence Committee and the EU Intelligence Directors’ Conclave.

   The DIS houses the national gateway to BICES, NATO’s automated information-sharing system, which ensures interoperability and real-time interaction with the intelligence organizations of the Alliance and its member states.

   Effective intelligence cooperation at NATO, EU and national level has no alternative. In this context our responsibilities and the area of our intelligence interest are bound to increase.

   The personnel of the DIS are united in their striving to meet the requirements and expectations of Bulgaria’s civilian leaders, military commanders and society. For the DIS employees, the support and appreciation of partner services is an important source of satisfaction. But this also imposes the obligation to work actively towards the enhancement of intelligence capabilities and the consolidation of the reputation the DIS has earned through much dedication, effort and professionalism.


   The main aspects and areas of DIS activities are dictated by the national security and defence policy, Bulgaria’s membership in NATO and the EU and the participation of Bulgarian Armed Forces’ units in international operations and missions abroad. The new requirements arising from the changed security environment and the national strategic objectives have shaped the following priorities for the DIS:

  • ensuring that timely and reliable information is collected and made available to the country’s civilian and military leaders to support political and administrative decision-making in the field of national security and defence;

  • provision of intelligence support to Bulgarian military contingents involved in operations and missions abroad;

  • early identification of potential risks and threats with an emphasis on transnational terrorism;

  • monitoring of the situation in crisis regions;

  • surveillance of migration and refugee flows that might threaten national security;

  • assistance to the Ministry of Defence leadership in implementing military diplomacy through the active involvement of military attaché’s offices;

  • enhancement of cooperation and information-sharing with other Bulgarian secret services;

  • effective participation in the NATO/EU intelligence process;

  • intensive interaction with the military intelligence services of the NATO/EU member states and the intelligence structures of the two alliances;

  • ensuring that information is available as necessary for the purposes of operations planning, transformation and modernization of the Bulgarian Armed Forces and their preparations to participate in multinational operations;

  • broadening of the spectrum of intelligence collection sources;

  • introduction of modern communication and information technology and intelligence cycle support systems.

   The nature of contemporary risks and threats in combination with the complicated and dynamic security environment require that military intelligence continuously improves its capabilities so that it could be able to counter modern challenges by conducting missions within a wide functional and territorial range.