National Insider Threat Policy Materials

Kevin Gosztola filed this request with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence of the United States of America.
Tracking # DF-2014-00195
Due May 30, 2014
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Kevin Gosztola

Dear FOIA Officer,

This is a request for records under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), 5), 5 U.S.C. § 552, et seq. I am seeking copies of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s files and any other documents, including any training materials, which ODNI may have on the development and implementation of the National Insider Threat Policy as directed by Executive Order 13587.

It was reported by McClatchy Newspapers that this is an “unprecedented initiative” that is “sweeping in its reach.” It extends beyond “national security” agencies to “most federal departments and agencies nationwide.”

I also request copies of any files, documents or records which detail any and all definitions, concepts or interpretations of “insider threat” pursuant to the National Insider Threat Policy. Additionally, I request any files, documents or records, which detail any and all policies, which may seek to address how to ensure the National Insider Threat Policy does not infringe upon the ability of employees to make whistleblower communications without being unintentionally caught up in the Insider Threat program.

A search for records responsive to this request should include, but not be limited to: main file records, cross-reference records, FOI/PA records, etc.

If you deny all or part of this request, please cite the specific exemptions you believe justify your refusal to release the information or permit the review and notify me of your appeal procedures available under the law.

I respectfully urge the agency to “black out” rather than “white out” or “cut out” material that must be redacted.

I call your attention to President Barack Obama’s 21 January 2009 Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, which directs agencies to adopt a presumption in favor of disclosure and stating that government information should not be kept confidential “merely because public officials might be embarrassed by disclosure, because errors and failures might be revealed, or because of speculative or abstract fears.”

I am a salaried and employed journalist for Firedoglake.com, an Internet news website that has gained a level of notoriety for routine coverage of whistleblower-related stories and issues, and I am filing this request in my capacity as a journalist.

According to 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(4)(A)(ii), codifying the ruling of Nat’l Security Archive v. Dep’t of Defense, 880 F.2d 1381 (D.C. Cir. 1989), the term “a representative of the news media” means any person or entity that gathers information of potential interest to a segment of the public, uses its editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience.

I have a clear intent to “publish[ ] or otherwise disseminate[ ] information to the public.” Id. at 1386 (quoting the following legislative history: 1) “It is critical that the phrase ‘representative of the news media’ be broadly interpreted if the act is to work as expected. . . . In fact, any person or organization which regularly publishes or disseminates information to the public . . . should qualify for waivers as a ‘representative of the news media.’” 132 Cong. Rec. S14298 (daily ed. Sept. 30, 1986) (emphasis in original quotation); 2) “A request by a reporter or other person affiliated with a newspaper, magazine, television or radio station, or other entity that is in the business of publishing or otherwise disseminating information to the public qualifies under this provision.” 132 Cong. Rec. H9463 (Oct. 8, 1986).

Therefore, in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act and relevant case law, I, Kevin Gosztola, should be considered a representative of the news media and as such I am also requesting a public interest fee waiver.

Please ensure that, in accordance with the DC Circuit’s ruling in Chambers v. Dep’t of the Interior, 568 F.3d 998 (D.C. Cir. 2009), all records potentially responsive to this FOIA request are immediately preserved from destruction until the final resolution of this FOIA action. Destruction of potentially responsive records after the receipt of a FOIA request is considered “contumacious conduct” by the DC Circuit. See id. at 1004.

Under law, your agency must respond to this request within 20 working days. A failure to comply may result in the filing of civil action against your agency in a United States District Court.

Please provide any records that are located or found to be responsive to this request to me in electronic (soft-copy) form.

I thank you for your cooperation in this matter. If you would like to discuss this request, please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.

Sincerely,

Kevin Gosztola

From: Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI)

An acknowledgement letter, stating the request is being processed.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good Morning Mr. Gosztola,

We would like to ask you to please narrow the scope of this request. In its current wording, the search would be extremely burdensome. We would appreciate any assistance that you can provide.

We look forward to hearing from you.
Regards,
ODNI FOIA

From: Kevin Gosztola

Dear FOIA Officer,

This is a resubmission and narrowing of a request for records under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), 5), 5 U.S.C. § 552, et seq. The scope has been narrowed because ODNI claims the original request would be "extremely burdensome" for the agency. As such, I am providing assistance and withdrawing a part of my previous request.

I am seeking copies of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s policies, guidelines and training materials, which ODNI may have that refer to the development and implementation of the National Insider Threat Policy as directed by Executive Order 13587.

It was reported by McClatchy Newspapers that this is an “unprecedented initiative” that is “sweeping in its reach.” It extends beyond “national security” agencies to “most federal departments and agencies nationwide.”

As ODNI is well aware, the agency follows this policy: "A Federal agency cannot retaliate against an employee or applicant because that individual exercises his or her rights under any of the Federal anti-discrimination or whistleblower protection laws listed above. If you believe that you are the victim of retaliation for engaging in protected activity, you must follow, as appropriate, the procedures described in the Anti-Discrimination Laws and Whistleblower Protection Laws sections or, if applicable, the administrative or negotiated grievance procedures in order to pursue any legal remedy."

Thus, I am specifically, and particularly, interested in any documents, files or records that reference the National Insider Threat Policy under EO 13587 and address steps, processes or procedures ODNI may be employing to protect federal employees from having his or her rights under federal anti-discrimination laws or whistleblower protection laws violated by the Insider Threat program.

If you deny all or part of this request, please cite the specific exemptions you believe justify your refusal to release the information or permit the review and notify me of your appeal procedures available under the law.

I respectfully urge the agency to “black out” rather than “white out” or “cut out” material that must be redacted.

I call your attention to President Barack Obama’s 21 January 2009 Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, which directs agencies to adopt a presumption in favor of disclosure and stating that government information should not be kept confidential “merely because public officials might be embarrassed by disclosure, because errors and failures might be revealed, or because of speculative or abstract fears.”

I am a salaried and employed journalist for Firedoglake.com, an Internet news website that has gained a level of notoriety for routine coverage of whistleblower-related stories and issues, and I am filing this request in my capacity as a journalist.

According to 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(4)(A)(ii), codifying the ruling of Nat’l Security Archive v. Dep’t of Defense, 880 F.2d 1381 (D.C. Cir. 1989), the term “a representative of the news media” means any person or entity that gathers information of potential interest to a segment of the public, uses its editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience.

I have a clear intent to “publish[ ] or otherwise disseminate[ ] information to the public.” Id. at 1386 (quoting the following legislative history: 1) “It is critical that the phrase ‘representative of the news media’ be broadly interpreted if the act is to work as expected. . . . In fact, any person or organization which regularly publishes or disseminates information to the public . . . should qualify for waivers as a ‘representative of the news media.’” 132 Cong. Rec. S14298 (daily ed. Sept. 30, 1986) (emphasis in original quotation); 2) “A request by a reporter or other person affiliated with a newspaper, magazine, television or radio station, or other entity that is in the business of publishing or otherwise disseminating information to the public qualifies under this provision.” 132 Cong. Rec. H9463 (Oct. 8, 1986).

Therefore, in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act and relevant case law, I, Kevin Gosztola, should be considered a representative of the news media and as such I am also requesting a public interest fee waiver.

Please ensure that, in accordance with the DC Circuit’s ruling in Chambers v. Dep’t of the Interior, 568 F.3d 998 (D.C. Cir. 2009), all records potentially responsive to this FOIA request are immediately preserved from destruction until the final resolution of this FOIA action. Destruction of potentially responsive records after the receipt of a FOIA request is considered “contumacious conduct” by the DC Circuit. See id. at 1004.

ODNI still has a legal obligation to respond to this request in a timely manner, as noted in the initial request.

Please provide any records that are located or found to be responsive to this request to me in electronic (soft-copy) form.

I thank you for your cooperation in this matter. If you would like to discuss this resubmitted and narrowed request, please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.

Sincerely,

Kevin Gosztola

From: Kevin Gosztola

Dear FOIA Officer,

I am following up on the status of an information request, ODNI Case #DF-2014-00195, that is more than two weeks overdue.

I am still seeking any documents, files or records that reference the National Insider Threat Policy under EO 13587 and address steps, processes or procedures ODNI may be employing to protect federal employees from having his or her rights under federal anti-discrimination laws or whistleblower protection laws violated by the Insider Threat program.

I narrowed the scope of the request as ODNI requested. It is less broad than it was before and this was done, as instructed, so that ODNI could conduct a search that would not be "extremely burdensome."

However, I have received no official response to the narrowed information request, which was submitted on May 27, 2014, and do not know if it was deemed acceptable or not.

I would appreciate any details on the status of my request, including but not limited to whether any documents, files or records requested are currently being searched for and processed.

Sincerely,

Kevin Gosztola

From: DNI-FOIA

Mr. Gosztola,

We apologize for not sending you a follow up after you narrowed the scope of your request. Regarding status: we accepted your request as narrowed and initiated searches for responsive records. Those searches are currently on-going. FYI, we will not be able to provide another status update until those searches are completed and we have a better idea of how many documents there will be for review. Thank you for your patience.

- Sally
ODNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

There has been no change since the last status update. We will not respond to any more status checks until there is a change in the said status.

Thank you.
ODNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Hello,

Your request is being processed and in the review queue. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you.

Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Hi Kevin,

Your request (DF-2014-00195) is being processed and in the review queue. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you.

Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,
Your request is being processed and is in the review queue. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you.
Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,

Your request is being processed and in the review queue. Please note that there are approximately 98 cases in the queue ahead of yours. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you for your patience.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,

Your request is being processed. Please note that there are approximately 86 cases in the queue ahead of yours. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you for your patience.

Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,

Your request is being processed. Please note that there are approximately 86 cases in the queue ahead of yours. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you for your patience.

Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,

Your request is being processed. Please note that there are approximately 86 cases in the queue ahead of yours. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you for your patience.

Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thank you for your help.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good afternoon,

Your request is being processed. Please note that there are approximately 85 cases in the queue ahead of yours. Until anything on the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you for your patience.
Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on May 1, 2014. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #DF-2014-00195.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

From: DNI-FOIA

Good morning,

There are currently 58 cases ahead of yours in our processing queue. We appreciate your continued patience.

Thank you,
DNI-FOIA

From: Office of the Director of National Intelligence

Mr. Gosztola,
Your request is currently in our queue to be worked. Please note there are 33 cases ahead of yours, until the status of your request changes, we will not provide any further updates. Thank you.
Sincerely,
DNI-FOIA

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