Is Lt Cmd. Giotto security chief throughout TOS?

And like are there multiple officers under him with rank of Lt. or are most of them enlisted/ensigns?

Also, what would their duties be?

  • 1
    As far as I know, it's only once the role is combined with tactical operations (weapons and shields) that there's any real mention of the security dept or their duties. Before then they're just used at the discretion of the bridge officers.
    – Valorum
    Oct 17, 2014 at 9:47
  • en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Giotto
    – Valorum
    Oct 17, 2014 at 9:49
  • 15
    Lol, did you even watch the show? "How does the security department function"? Mate, it doesn't. :) Oct 17, 2014 at 11:13
  • 5
    @LightnessRacesinOrbit - I'm constantly astounded by the inability of the enterprise crew to stop baddies from roaming the ship, especially after they've been put into the (open door policy) sickbay
    – Valorum
    Oct 17, 2014 at 11:22
  • 1
    Mostly the Security Chief's job is cleaning out the lockers of the slain and putting out want ads for replacements at nearby starbases.
    – Oldcat
    Feb 12, 2015 at 23:41

2 Answers 2


As with most of the original Starfleet, the answer depends on what you consider to be "canon".

TV Series:

The sole mention of security leadership in the TV series is from TOS: Devil in the Dark when Lt Cmdr Giotto is detailed to assemble a security party. There's no specific mention of him being the Chief of Security and the official Startrek.com biography for him only refers to "a member of the U.S.S. Enterprise security team".

KIRK : Mister Spock, have Lieutenant Commander Giotto assemble the security troops and arm them with phaser number two.

Prior to this, the security teams merely seem to be assigned by whichever bridge officer needs them, at the time that they need them. There's no indication that any of them hold a rank higher than Crewman.

Semi-Canon Reference

The Starfleet Handbook (written by Geoffrey Mandel, and later incorporated into the semi-canon USS Enterprise Officer's Manual) lists Lt. Cmdr. Giotto as being "Head of Security" as of Stardate 1307 when Kirk assumed command of the Enterprise.

His team appears to consist of one other Lieutenant Commander and various Lieutenants. Presumably there are Crewman below them in rank also.

![ENGINEERING & SHIP'S SERVICES. Lt. Cmdr. Giotto, Chief of Security, CSE 514-293. Lt. Cmdr. Kelowitz, Security Officer, SYE 086-887. Lt. Osborne, Security Officer, SYE 113-222. Lt. Rowe, Security Officer, SYE 136-116. Lt. Shea, Security Officer, SYE 205-090. Lt. Lemli, Security Officer, SYE 298-047. Lt. Nored, Security Officer, SYE 316-180. Lt. Dickerson, Security Officer, SYE 596-872. Lt. Rand, Head Yeoman, CY 080-495.]

The revised USS Enterprise Officer's Manual (1980 edition, co-written with future TNG & DS9 Head of Art Doug Drexler) written in the wake of the success of Star Trek II indicates that Chekov took charge of Security following Giotto's retirement.

CHEKOV, PAVEL ANDREIVICH. Lt. Commander. Serial number: CSE 658-749. Official position: Chief of Security. Current assignment: U.S.S. Enterprise, Starship Class, NCC-1701. Promoted to Lieutenant on the recommendation of his commanding officer, assigned as executive officer to galactic cruiser U.S.S. Lermontov on Stardate 6019. Returned to the Enterprise on Stardate 7808, replacing Cmdr. Giotto as Chief of Security.

  • So many canon inconsistencies here. My head hurts.
    – Valorum
    Oct 25, 2014 at 20:20
  • Glorious answer. Mar 2, 2017 at 14:46

Starfleet is not a Gestapo

There is an interesting line in "Mirror, Mirror", when Scotty notes one of the differences he has observed between the barbaric Mirror universe and his own.

Mister Sulu is security chief, like the ancient gestapo!

The notion of a security chief is revolting to Scotty. Starfleet is an idealistic, radically peaceful organization, and this idealism is reflected in the noticeable tone of revulsion in Scotty's voice.

Others have observed that there is no named chief of security or security department in TOS. They don't exist because they are anathema to Starfleet at the time.

  • 1
    This interpretation is consistent with the TNG era in which the security officers on the Enterprise-D were Yar (grew up on a failed colony with violent criminals) and Worf (a member of a species focused on war). It's plausible that the Federation saw the necessity of having a security officer, but only those accustomed to violence could stomach the job. Dec 29, 2018 at 4:30
  • 1
    Late to the party but -- while this is a great find for this question, I have a feeling that Scotty was disgusted by the idea of an 'internal security' security chief, rather than one meant to protect the ship and crew from outside danger....
    – Basya
    Apr 17, 2023 at 13:55
  • @basya that position is called tactical in Scotty's time, not security.
    – J Doe
    Apr 19, 2023 at 3:46

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