30 Cdo

30 Commando IX Group

30 Commando Information Exploitation Group formed in the darkest days of the Second World War and serves today as the ‘eyes and ears’ of 3 Commando Brigade. 

30 Commando Information Exploitation Group (30 Commando) is descended from 30 Commando Assault Unit, which was formed in the darkest days of the Second World War by a team of Naval Intelligence Officers (including Ian Fleming, author of the James Bond novels).

30 Commando Assault Unit was tasked to move ahead of advancing Allied forces and infiltrate enemy territory to capture much-needed Intelligence; its operatives were instrumental to the stealing of top secret German technology, including the Enigma machine.

Its motto – “Attain by Surprise” – is something 30 Commando has retained to this day. 

30 Commando remains at the cutting edge of Defence, constantly adapting to changes in techniques and technology, ensuring that Commando Forces are the first to understand, adapt and overcome.

Facts & figures

Facts & figures


Formed by Ian Flemming


Established during the Second World War


Weeks of training to become a Royal Marines Officer

Our skills

30 CDO

Unit Structure

30 Commando is made up of six specialist squadrons:

Headquarters Squadron, including Intelligence and Information Activities Cells
Surveillance and Reconnaissance Squadron
Y Squadron, including Air Defence Troop
Communications Squadron
Logistics Squadron, including Royal Marines Police Troop
Base Squadron


Our base

30 CDO

Our base

Stonehouse, plymouth

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Commanding Officer

Lieutenant Colonel Simon Cox

All about 30 Commando Information Exploitation Group

30 Commando is a diverse, ever-evolving Unit, comprising some of the best and the brightest personnel the Ministry of Defence has to offer. 

30 Commando Headquarters fuses and disseminates information to enhance the Commando Force’s awareness and understanding, and inform the Commander’s decision making.

Surveillance and Reconnaissance Squadron deploys ahead of the main Commando Force for specialist reconnaissance tasks. Made up of Royal Marines Mountain Leaders in the main, but also including Royal Marines Landing Craft operators and Army Commandos, they operate in small teams, providing the initial battle picture for the Commando Force Headquarters.

Y Squadron is made up of Royal Marines’ Electronic Warfare specialists. Always listening, they locate, intercept and disrupt enemy electronic transmissions.
Air Defence Troop protects Commando Forces from air attack. Using the High Velocity Missile System, it destroys enemy aircraft.

Communications Squadron provides the communications linkages and networks that are essential for our operations. Highly trained in advanced communication methods, it keeps the Commando Force Headquarters connected to its Units and other parts of the Navy.

Logistics Squadron is responsible for maintaining 30 Commando’s vehicles, weapons and other important items of equipment. This squadron also ensures that all 30 Commando and Commando Force Headquarters personnel have the logistical support they need to do their job.

Royal Marines Police Troop protects key personnel, such as visiting dignitaries and foreign officials, and is responsible for policing the Commando Force. It also provides training and assistance to foreign police forces around the world.

Base Squadron looks after Royal Marines Barracks Stonehouse, much of which was built in the 1700s. It is responsible for providing real-life support, such as dining facilities, accommodation, medical care, rehabilitation of injured personnel and physical training facilities.


Unit history

Royal Navy careers

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