IB vs. RAW

Difference Between IB and RAW

Although both IB and RAW are Indian intelligence agencies, they are different.


IB is the Intelligence Bureau of India and is India’s internal intelligence agency. IB is the oldest intelligence agency in the world. It originally started in 1947 as Central Intelligence Bureau and is under the governance of the Ministry of Home Affairs. The main responsibility of IB is to obtain intelligence from places inside India and carry out tasks that are related to counter-terrorism and counter-intelligence. IB can pass on intelligence between other Indian intelligence agencies and the police. The IB is given the power to conduct wiretapping even without warrant. Employees of IB are from the Indian Police Service and the military. Its staff is mostly from law enforcement agencies.


RAW is the Research and Analysis Wing of India and is India’s external intelligence agency. RAW came into in 1968, placed directly under the India Prime Minister’s office. RAW happened because of two wars that India faced in the 1960s, namely, Sino-Indian war in 1962 and Indo-Pakistan war in 1965. The responsibility of RAW on the other hand is to gather external intelligence and perform tasks related to counter-terrorism. Duties of RAW are in the collection of intelligence via espionage, psychological warfare, subversion and sabotage. RAW has its own service cadre called the Research and Analysis Service (RAS). However in the beginning depended on the services of trained intelligence officers. Later candidates from police, military and other services too were also recruited by RAW. One of its primary functions is covert operations. It also has a large and significant contribution in Indian foreign policy making.