Where was Echelon mentioned in the Ghost in the Shell series? I see it mentioned in various wikis, but I can't recall ever seeing it mentioned. Want to read the context it's mentioned in for myself.

Anime transcripts doesn't seem to yield anything about it being mentioned in the anime.

  • It might have been mentioned in passing while talking about the international police/surveillance methods. It's not something inconceivable, considering we've had multiple discoveries of government programs for spying on everybody's email. So it's sort of based on reality. Especially in the GITS world where technology is so advanced it wouldn't be surprising.
    – Hakase
    Commented Oct 7, 2016 at 17:57

1 Answer 1


It's related to "Big Brother" in Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. From a Japanese list of terms used in GitS,

Big Brother

Nickname of satellite-ring communication interception network. A communication interception network that American Empire's National Reconnaissance Office is proud of, which intercepts any communication circuit, including internet, wireless, telephone, etc. The amount of incoming communication data freezes operator androids and makes the terminals within 1km radius go down even if Public Security Section 9's facility is used. "Big Brother" was introduced in a novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, and it's a secret code for an surveillance system called "ECHELON".

but the word "Echelon" itself is only mentioned in its movie counterpart, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - The Laughing Man. From a Japanese site comparing the anime and its movie counterpart,

Also, the term "Echelon" - a satellite-ring communication interception network - was spoken by Aramaki. It makes it easier to understand what "Big Brother" is about.

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