NICOLA Sturgeon is to lose her security detail, which was costing some £600,000 a year, according to reports.

The former first minister, who officially left the job in late March, had security in place amid fears for her safety.

The former first minister has been the target of huge amounts of vitriol and abuse online. In February, a man was found guilty of threatening to kill her after writing a threat on social media.

But Scotland’s top civil servant, permanent secretary John-Paul Marks, and now-former Police Scotland chief constable Iain Livingstone signed off on the cut to the service, according to the Scottish Sun.

The detail was reported to be around six police officers plus vehicles, but it has been scaled back and is this month due to be ended completely.

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The SNP and Sturgeon herself did not object to the changes, reports say, but there was “pushback” behind the scenes.

A source told the Sun: “While it didn’t come directly from Sturgeon, there was pushback against the decision – a bit of a row behind the scenes.”

In June, Sturgeon was arrested, questioned, and released without charge as part of Police Scotland's ongoing probe into SNP finances.

Asked about “Operation Branchform” during an appearance at the Edinburgh Fringe earlier in August, she said: “It’s obviously been a really difficult, traumatic experience.

“People live through worse, I’m not going to overstate that. My touchstone I guess in all of it, all along, is I am confident in my own position. I am absolutely certain I have done nothing wrong.”

Sturgeon’s husband Peter Murrell and the SNP’s former treasurer Colin Beattie were also arrested, questioned, and released as part of the probe.

Professor John Curtice said that the incidents have had little effect on the SNP’s health in the polls, pointing instead to the leadership contest as the source of the party’s recent dip in support.