First listed on: 01 July 2022
General Counsel

Senior Executive Service Band 1
Canberra – ACT

ASD is the Australian Government’s foreign signals intelligence, offensive cyber, and cyber security agency.

We are seeking dynamic Senior Executives to drive the organisation forward and deliver against our three principal functions:

  • collect foreign signals intelligence;
  • enhance Australia’s cyber resilience; and
  • conduct offensive cyber operations.

In all cases, our primary mission is to advance Australia’s national interests and defend Australia from global threats. From the threat of terrorism through to protecting and supporting Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel when they are deployed overseas, ASD plays a key role in Australia’s national security. ASD is seeking a highly qualified and experienced legal practitioner to fill the Australian Signals Directorate’s (ASD) General Counsel position at the SES Band 1 level. The role of General Counsel is critical in assisting ASD to fulfil its purpose in accordance with the law. This is reflected in ASD’s values to be meticulous in execution, always acting legally and ethically, and being accountable to the public through government for everything ASD does.

As General Counsel you will lead a small legal team to provide high quality legal advice on complex matters relevant to the National Intelligence Community, in particular in relation to the operation of the Intelligence Services Act 2001 and Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act 1979, workplace relations law (in particular the Workplace Relations Act 1996 and the Fair Work Act 2009), and legal aspects of policy development. The role also includes engagement on behalf of ASD with the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security.

ASD recognises that its signals intelligence capabilities are uniquely intrusive, and its offensive cyber operations even more so. That is why maintaining the Australian Government’s and the Australian public’s trust, by demonstrating that ASD operates legally and with propriety, is of the utmost importance to ASD.

The successful applicant will lead a team of lawyers who will provide advice on all aspects of ASD’s functions, covered under the Intelligence Services Act 2001:

  • collect foreign signals intelligence;
  • communicate foreign signals intelligence;
  • prevent and disrupt offshore cyber-enabled crime;
  • provide cyber security advice and assistance to Australian governments, businesses and individuals;
  • support military operations;
  • provide technical assistance to other government agencies; and
  • cooperate with and assist the national security community in the performance of their functions.

To be eligible for engagement, an applicant must be admitted (or eligible for admission) in Australia, require a Bachelor of Laws or a Juris Doctor from an Australian tertiary institution (or a comparable overseas qualification) and have at least 10 years post qualification experience, preferably in public law. You must hold, or be eligible to obtain, a practicing certificate in the ACT. This is a security-designated position.

As part of the Senior Leadership Group, you will play a key role in promoting and influencing a shared commitment to the strategic direction of ASD as the Australian Government’s foreign signals intelligence, offensive cyber, and cyber security agency.

As a Branch Head (SES Band 1) you will join ASD’s Senior Leadership Group and play a key role in leading and influencing a high-performing integrated civilian/military organisation. You will influence the strategic direction of ASD and work with colleagues across the Defence portfolio and Government to achieve results. In these roles you will:

  • lead and manage a Branch using inclusive leadership, including leading change and transformation initiaives in support of ASD’s objectives;
  • exercise high-level judgement, and capitalise on innovative alternatives to resolve complex problems;
  • think laterally, effectively challenge the status quo and provide contestability in decision making; and
  • demonstrate resilience and take personal accountability for achieving results.

Successful applicants will exemplify ASD’s values and engender a culture of achievement, collaboration and agility. You will be self-aware, and will encourage and respect the diversity of ideas and perspectives that defines ASD’s workforce.

Additional Information

Application Closing Date: Sunday 17 July, 2022

For further information please review the job information pack, reference ASD/04464/22, on  

Prior to commencement, successful applicants will be required to undergo a psychological assessment and an extensive security clearance process. As a Positive Vetting clearance is required, applicants must be Australian Citizens, be able to account for their personal background for their whole life and be able to demonstrate suitability to work in a high security intelligence environment.


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