Officially the ODG assists British-based companies in opening or expanding foreign operations and investing abroad. In actuality, it is a covert operational and tactical unit of British security operating largely independently but ultimately under the control of the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).
Formed to serve as a modern-day version of the World War II-era Special Operations Executive espionage and sabotage group, the ODG's mission is to identify and eliminate threats to the United Kingdom by extraordinary means; quite simply to "protect the Realm...by any means necessary." It is not an intelligence-gathering organisation and instead is supplied intelligence from MI6.
Tucked away inconspicuously in the hierarchy of the FCO, the ODG operates from an office building near Regent's Park, London. Specifically, in a narrow, six-storey Edwardian building on a quiet road, just off Devonshire Street. It is separated from bustling Marylebone Road by a lacklustre - but camouflaging - solicitors' quarters, NGO offices and doctors' surgeries.
Known members and associates
- M – The ODG's director-general is a retired Royal Navy admiral known only as "M."
- James Bond – Bond is an agent with the "00 Section" of O (Operations) Branch of the Overseas Development Group. His OC, or official cover, within the ODG is as a "security and integrity analyst" whose job is to travel the world and assess business risks.