National security

Security measures are taken to protect the Palace of Westminster in London, UK. The heavy blocks of concrete are designed to prevent a car bomb or other device being rammed into the building.

National security, or national defence, is the security and defence of a sovereign state, including its citizens, economy, and institutions, which is regarded as a duty of government. Originally conceived as protection against military attack, national security is widely understood to include also non-military dimensions, including the security from terrorism, minimization of crime, economic security, energy security, environmental security, food security, and cyber-security. Similarly, national security risks include, in addition to the actions of other nation states, action by violent non-state actors, by narcotic cartels, and by multinational corporations, and also the effects of natural disasters.

Governments rely on a range of measures, including political, economic, and military power, as well as diplomacy, to safeguard the security of a nation state. They may also act to build the conditions of security regionally and internationally by reducing transnational causes of insecurity, such as climate change, economic inequality, political exclusion, and nuclear proliferation.


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