The Foreign Intelligence Service consists of several special state agencies – foreign intelligence bodies of the Russian Federation – and is a vital part of Russia's security system aimed at protecting the individual, society and the state from external threats by using the means and resources stipulated in this Federal Law.

The Foreign Intelligence Service is part of the national-security system and is called upon to protect individuals, society and the state from foreign threats. The President of the Russian Federation oversees the activity of the Foreign Intelligence Service.