By Damien McElroy, Foreign Affairs correspondent
Sir Richard Dearlove, who served as head of MI6 until 2004, said that Britain must not be “squeamish” about using the intelligence services to defend its economic interests.
The former C said central banks like the Bank of England maintained extensive networks of contacts to secure information on future developments. But specialist intelligence agencies should also undertake the task of financial security.
“I am addressing the future of the euro and how defaults affect us economically,” he told the Global Strategy Forum. “Efficient central bankers should be able to handle themselves but I am indicating they could and might need help from time to time on the currency issue.”
Sir Richard added that 2008 financial crisis had changed his views on the role of intelligence agencies in protecting the economy. Britain needed to be 'forewarned and forearmed’ in anticipation of a future crisis.