|Submitted||Sept. 2, 2021|
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To Whom It May Concern:
Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:
Records mentioning or describing Vulcanbot, a Vietnam-based botnet which has been active since 2009.
The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.
Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.
Thank you for filing your FOIA request online on 9/2/2021. Here is a review of your request.
The records I request can be described as follows:
To Whom It May Concern:Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:Records mentioning or describing Vulcanbot, a Vietnam-based botnet which has been active since 2009.The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.Sincerely,Emma North-BestAttachments:https://cdn.muckrock.com/outbound_composer_attachments/EmmaBest/100465/Fee20category20and20search20parameters.pdfUpload documents directly: https://www.muckrock.com/
The time period of my request is from 01/01/2009 to 09/03/2021
I am A representative of the news media seeking information as part of a news gathering effort and not for commercial use.
I am willing to pay $25 for my request.
I request a waiver of all fees for this request.
Reason: I am a member of the news media and request classification as such. I have previously writtenabout the government and its activities, with some reaching over 100,000 readers in outlets suchas Gizmodo, MuckRock, Motherboard, Property of the People, Unicorn Riot, and The Outline,among others. As such, as I have a reasonable expectation of publication and my editorial andwriting skills are well established. In addition, I discuss and comment on the files online andmake them available through non-profits such as the library Internet Archive and the journalistnon-profit MuckRock, disseminating them to a large audience. While my research is not limitedto this, a great deal of it, including this, focuses on the activities and attitudes of the governmentitself. As such, it is not necessary for me to demonstrate the relevance of this particular subject inadvance.Further, case law states that “proof of the ability to disseminate the released information to abroad cross- section of the public is not required.” Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Dep’t of Justice, 365F.3d 1108, 1126 (D.C. Cir. 2004); see Carney v. U.S. Dep’t of Justice, 19 F. 3d 807, 814-15 (2dCir. 1994). Further, courts have held that "qualified because it also had “firm” plans to “publish anumber of . . . ‘document sets’” concerning United States foreign and national security policy."Under this criteria, as well, I qualify as a member of the news media.Additionally, courts have held that the news media status "focuses on the nature of the requester,not its request. The provision requires that the request be “made by” a representative of the newsmedia. Id. § 552(a)(4)(A)(ii)(II). A newspaper reporter, for example, is a representative of thenews media regardless of how much interest there is in the story for which he or she is requestinginformation." As such, the details of the request itself are moot for the purposes of determiningthe appropriate fee category.As my primary purpose is to inform about government activities by reporting on it and makingthe raw data available, I request that fees be waived.This request specifically includes both previously processed and previously unprocesseddocuments. If the documents are 25 or more years old and previously processed documents wereprocessed before the 25th anniversary of the document’s creation, I request that in addition to theprevious processed copy, the document be reprocessed and redactions reviewed.
My additional comments are as follows:
Mrs. Emma North-Best
MuckRock News DEPT MR 118715
411A Highland Ave
Somerville, Massachusetts 02144-2516
**THIS EMAIL BOX IS NOT MONITORED, PLEASE DO NOT REPLY TO THIS EMAIL.** Ms.North-Best: This email responds to yourSeptember 2, 2021, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. § 552) request received by the U.S. Department of State,Office of Information Programs and Services on September 3, 2021, regarding records mentioning or describing Vulcanbot, a Vietnam-based botnet which has been active since 2009 (Date Range for Record Search: From 1/1/2009 To 9/3/2021). This Office assigned your request the subject reference number. This Office denies your request, as currently written, because itdoes not reasonably describe the records sought. request mustreasonably describe the Department records that are sought to enable Departmentpersonnel to begin a search for responsive records. Such details may include the subject,timeframe, names of any individuals involved, a contract number (ifapplicable), and reasons why the requester believes the Department may haverecords regarding the subject of the request. See 22 CFR 171.4(b). If you are not satisfied with thisOffice’s determination in response to your request, you may administrativelyappeal to: Appeals Officer, Office of InformationPrograms and Services, U.S. Department of State, 2201 C Street, NW, Room B266,Washington, D.C. 20520; or facsimile at 202-485-1718. Your appeal must be postmarked orelectronically transmitted within 90 days of the date of this email. If you have any questionsregarding your request, please contact our FOIA Requester Service Center or ourFOIA Public Liaison by email at FOIAstatus@state.gov or telephone at 202-261-8484. Additionally, youmay contact the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) at theNational Archives and Records Administration to inquire about the FOIAmediation services they offer. Thecontact information for OGIS is as follows: Office of Government InformationServices, National Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road-OGIS,College Park, Maryland 20740-6001, email at firstname.lastname@example.org; telephone at202-741-5770; toll free at 1-877-684-6448; or facsimile at 202-741-5769. Sincerely, /s/ J. Turman, for Marilyn E. Brittingham Acting Chief Requester Communications Branch **THIS EMAIL BOX IS NOT MONITORED, PLEASE DO NOT REPLY TO THIS EMAIL.**
To Whom It May Concern:
I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information Act request, copied below, and originally submitted on Sept. 2, 2021. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response. You had assigned it reference number #F-2021-09991.
Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.
Ms. Emma North-Best,
The Office of Information Programs and Services (IPS) is in receipt of your inquiry below regarding case number F-2021-09991. We will follow-up with you as soon as possible to provide a response.
Thank you in advance for your patience.
If you have any questions, please contact the FOIA Requester Service Center (FRSC) at (202) 261-8484 or send an e-mail to email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
U.S. Department of State
FOIA Requester Service Center
This is in response to your email below.
Our records indicate that you were advised via email dated September 3, 2021, that FOIA request F-2021-09991 was denied because it was not reasonably described. A copy of the Department's acknowledgement email is attached for your reference.
Please note that if you wish to request Department of State records, you may submit a new request that clearly describes the records you seek.
U.S. Department of State
FOIA Requester Service Center