Turnbull creates home office portfolio in major security overhaul


"Australians would be very concerned if a new national security super department is being created just to keep Peter Dutton happy, especially when it's so vehemently opposed by so many of his colleagues", she says.

"Importantly, ASIO, the AFP and Australian Border Force will all report directly to the home affairs minister".

Mr Turnbull was joined by Mr Peter Dutton - the big victor from the shake up - and Attorney-General George Brandis and Justice Minister Michael Keenan.

"Let me be quite clear, this is not a United States-style Department of Homeland Security".

An office of national intelligence would be set up to help co-ordination between the agencies, with the shake-up concentrating more power in the hands of Dutton, who has been hailed by conservatives for halting the arrival of asylum-seeker boats from Asia.

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Malcolm Turnbull said the portfolio would be similar to the UK's home office arrangement, "a federation, if you will, of border and security agencies".

"Australia faces an increasingly complex security environment, evolving threats from terrorism and organised crime, and the development of new and emerging technologies, including encryption", Turnbull said in a statement announcing the reforms.

"We can not take an "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach to security arrangements", he said.

"We have accepted the recommendations of the Australian Intelligence Community review as a sound basis to reform Australia's intelligence arrangements".

Counter-terrorism police have also made a string of arrests since late 2014 across the nation and say they have prevented 12 terror attacks on home soil in the past few years.