The story takes place in the year 2034, two years after the events in Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. 2nd GIG. Female cyborg Major Motoko Kusanagi has left Public Security Section 9, an elite counter-terrorist and anti-crime unit specializing in cyber-warfare, which has expanded to a team of 20 field operatives with Togusa acting as the field lead.
The year is 2030 and six years have passed since a criminal known only as "The Laughing Man" swept through top medical nanotechnology firms committing acts of cyber-terrorism, kidnapping, and espionage leaving no known suspects. New information is revealed, as Section 9 enters the hunt for a suspect capable of unfathomable actions in this compilation of Stand Alone Complex content.
The year is 2030. Six months passed since the Laughing Man Incident was solved. About 3 million refugees are living in Japan, invited to fill the labor shortage. However, the emergent presence of the invited-refugees intensified their confrontation with the "Individualists", who called for national isolation, which then led to the increased incidences of terrorist attacks. Under these circumstances, a terrorist group called the Individual Eleven carries out a suicide attack. But there was a greater scheme behind their action. When Section 9 learns this, they attempt to nail down the mastermind of the incident. Meanwhile, Kuze, a surviving member of the Individual Eleven, becomes a charismatic leader of the invited-refugees and intensifies the confrontation against the government. And Motoko starts feeling a strange sense of fate connecting her with Kuze...
In the future when technological enhancements and robotics are a way of life, Major Motoko Kusanagi and Section 9 take care of the jobs that are too difficult for the police. Section 9 employs hackers, sharpshooters, detectives and cyborgs all in an effort to thwart cyber criminals and their plans to attack the innocent.