1A sensitive issue or piece of information that is kept secret by the government, usually to protect the public.
- ‘Provider of unauthorised access to personal data or a state secret, along with the disclosure of a user password will serve between one to three years' imprisonment.’
- ‘People convicted of deliberately leaking state secrets could face jail terms of three to 10 years.’
- ‘Its contents continue to be a heavily guarded state secret.’
- ‘It is no state secret that the selection convention in Castlebar was somewhat unusual to say the least.’
- ‘Actual death penalty statistics are a closely guarded state secret.’
- 1.1humorous A piece of information, usually of a trivial or personal nature, that is closely guarded and desired to be kept private.‘she thought her affair with the boss was a state secret, but we all giggled about it behind her back’
- ‘She also owns an iPod, although her playlist is a closely-guarded state secret.’