Inventorying the FBI

An project to take inventory of the FBI's files on different subjects in order to identify what the FBI has worked on and to help requesters know what files they can request.

An project to take inventory of the FBI’s files on different subjects in order to identify what the FBI has worked on and to help requesters know what files they can request. This project takes advantage of the FBI’s numerical filing system to query files and identify the subject of a file without having to pay for the complete duplication cost.

The project will begin and initially focus on 161 files, which are Special Inquiries for White House, Congressional Committees and Other Government Agencies and 190 files, which are files relating to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Acts.

That doesn’t mean you can’t contribute by helping ID files of other subjects. For a fairly complete list of the FBI’s file types, see here.

7 Articles

FBI’s High Visibility Memoranda document FOIA’s greatest hits

FBI’s High Visibility Memoranda document FOIA’s greatest hits

When the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s FOIA office in the Records Management Division prepares to release a file that it deems significant, newsworthy or controversial, it issues what’s known as a High Visibility Memoranda. These memos, circulated to different parts of the Bureau and often to the Director’s Office as well as outside agencies, outline the proposed releases and their possible fallout. A recent release of over 500 pages of these memos serves as a list of files for FOIA requesters to file new requests for so the files can be published online, as well as showing government reactions to the requests themselves.

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While investigating a DOJ leak to the mafia, the FBI appear to have overlooked a known mafia mole at the telephone company

While investigating a DOJ leak to the mafia, the FBI appear to have overlooked a known mafia mole at the telephone company

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s file on telephone security measures appears to show the Bureau overlooking an obvious line of inquiry while investigating a leak to the mafia and possible tapped phone lines. While the file indicates that the Bureau checked both the Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service’s phones for taps, it indicates they may have overlooked the most obvious possibility: that the culprit was the phone company employee who’d been giving the mafia access to the phone lines.

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The Atomic Space Bug: FBI files show a wiretapped phone was found at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's predecessor

The Atomic Space Bug: FBI files show a wiretapped phone was found at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s predecessor

According to Federal Bureau of Investigation files, a few months before it was abolished, a bug was discovered in the Honolulu offices of the Atomic Energy Commission. The device would not only let someone listen in on phone calls, but any conversations held around the phone - even when it wasn’t in use.

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15 Requests

Awaiting Appeal

4 files

161s 1986

Emma Best sent this request to the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America

Awaiting Response

4 files

161s 1996

Emma Best sent this request to the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America

Awaiting Response

3 files

161s 2002

Emma Best sent this request to the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America

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