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Archive for March, 2011

Three New Papers

The PIDB looks forward to hearing your comments on the following new papers: Paper 3:  Regularizing the Declassification Review of Classified Congressional Records Systematize and prioritize the declassification review of Legislative records at the NDC Paper 4:  Discretionary Declassification and Release of Contemporary National Security Information Encourage policymakers to consider the advantages of not classifying […]

Regularizing the Declassification Review of Classified Congressional Records

The Problem The current process by which classified Congressional records are transferred to the National Archives & Records Administration (NARA), reviewed for declassification, and released to the public does not adequately reflect the importance of these records and the special status they must enjoy as records of the Legislative Branch that are managed by the […]

Discretionary Declassification and Release of Contemporary National Security Information

The Problem Classification and declassification decisions are based on risk assessments and time-based standards for withholding.  Agencies determine whether to protect information through classification by evaluating the damage its release would cause to the national security.  Information deemed worthy of classification is marked as such, assigned a declassification date based on its perceived sensitivity, and […]

Simplifying the Declassification Review Process for Historical Records

The Problem National security records frequently contain classified information from more than one agency.  Under Executive Order 13526, “Classified National Security Information” (the Order), only the agency that creates classified information can declassify it. [1] If an agency produces a record containing its own information as well as information from one or more other agencies, […]

About Transforming Classification

Transforming Classification: An Introduction Welcome to Transforming Classification, a blog sponsored by the Public Interest Declassification Board. President Obama has charged the Board with designing a more fundamental transformation of the security classification system. In response to his request, we are proposing new solutions that address the shortcomings of the current system and tackle the […]

Blog Etiquette

To strengthen the quality of discussion we ask that you follow the following Blog Etiquette: Always ask yourself before you post: Is this advancing the conversation? Does it add new relevant information? Does it raise a concern with a proposal? Does it suggest a way to improve a proposal? Does it express an opinion on […]

Using Technology to Improve Classification and Declassification

The Problem Advances in the electronic environment have led to a pronounced increase in the amount of classified information being produced.  Staggering volume and scarcity of resources make the eventual human review of these records for declassification impossible.  Human review as it is done today is estimated at two full-time employees (FTEs) per gigabyte.  At […]

Reconsidering Information Management in the Electronic Environment

The Public Interest Declassification Board (PIDB) recommends that a policy be implemented for uniform government-wide metadata standards for classified electronic records (e-records).  The adoption of metadata standards will make declassification review of e-records more effective and efficient.  The current focus on analog records (paper and special media) has kept attention from this looming and monumental […]

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