REPORT of the COMMISSION ON PROTECTING AND REDUCING GOVERNMENT SECRECY

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REPORT
of the
COMMISSION ON
PROTECTING AND REDUCING
GOVERNMENT SECRECY

1997

 

SENATE DOCUMENT 105-2

PURSUANT TO PUBLIC LAW 236

103RD CONGRESS


UNITED STATES
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1997


Chairman
Daniel Patrick Moynihan, New York

Vice Chairman
Larry Combest, Texas

Commission Members
Jesse Helms, North Carolina
Lee H. Hamilton, Indiana
John M. Deutch, Massachusetts
Martin C. Faga, Virginia
Alison B. Fortier, Maryland
Richard K. Fox, District of Columbia
Ellen Hume, District of Columbia
Samuel P. Huntington, Massachusetts
John D. Podesta, District of Columbia
Maurice Sonnenberg, New York
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The pages retrieved from the online Commission on Protecting and Reducing Government Secrecy are in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. If you don't have the Adobe Acrobat Reader, you can download it from Adobe Systems to view PDF files.

Contents

Preliminary Pages (55K)

Table of Contents and Figures and Tables (11K)

Summary of Findings and Recommendations (30K)

Chairman's Foreword (77K)

Vice Chairman's Foreword (19K)

I. Overview: Protecting Secrets and Reducing Secrecy: (55K)
Commission Purposes and Objectives
Secrecy Issues Not Addressed by the Commission
Defining Government Secrecy
The Means for Protecting Government Secrets
The Importance of Protecting Secrets
The Intangible Costs of Secrecy
Efforts to Quantify the Costs of Secrecy
Evolving Concepts of National Security
A Statutory Basis for the Secrecy System
The Case for a Statutory Approach
A Proposed Statute
Conclusion


II. Rethinking Classification: Better Protection and Greater Openness (106K)
Toward a Life Cycle Approach to Classification Management
The Secrecy System
Bases for Classification
A Half Century of Executive Orders
Protection of Sources and Methods
Protection Under the Atomic Energy Act
Living With Ambiguity: The Levels of Classification
Controlling Access to Secrets: The "Need-to-Know" Principle
Clarifying Security in Special Access Programs
Protecting Other Government Information
The Classifiers
Original Classification Authorities: The Linchpin of Classification
Derivative Classifiers: Enhancing Accountability Where it Matters
Developing Better Classification Guides
Improving the Training and Education of Classifiers
The Key to Better Classification: The Initial Decision to Classify
The Importance of the Initial Decision
Improving the Initial Decision
Enhancing Implementation and Oversight
A Greater Role for the Congress
The Focal Point: Executive Branch Policy Development and Oversight
Policy Development: Who's in Charge?
Oversight: The Critical Missing Link
A New Approach to Policy Development and Oversight
Strengthening Implementation and Oversight Within Agencies
Conclusion


III. Common Sense Declassification and Public Access: (116K)
Why Public Access Matters
Promising Developments: Declassification Success Stories
Unnecessary Secrecy Persists
Sensible Risk Management
Continuing Barriers to Declassification and Public Access
Declassification Under Past Executive Orders
Executive Order 12958: A Renewed Focus on Declassification
Declassification and the Freedom of Information Act
How Much Is Still Classified?
How Long Does It Take Before Information Is Declassified
How Much Does Declassification Cost
The Impact of Agency Equities: Multiple Agency Reviews Mean Multiple Delays
The Current State of Agency Records Management
Agency Attitudes Affect Public Access
Public Access in the Information Age
Adequate Oversight Is Crucical to Sensible Declassification Policies
Recommendations for Improving Declassification and Public Access
Establishing A National Declassification Center to Coordinate Public Access Policy
Clarifying Protection of Sources and Methods Information
Improving Records Management and Other Agency Practices to Promote Public Access
Conclusion


IV. Personnel Security: Protection Through Detection: (74K)
Overview of the Personnel Security Process
The Background Investigation
Types of Investigations
Investigative Costs
The Adjudication
Improving the Current System
Modernizing the System's Cold War Foundations
Increasing Clearance Reciprocity and Standardization
Enhancing Investigative Quality
Reducing Inefficiencies in the Processing of Cases
Addressing Transparency and Due Process Concerns
Allocating Resources More Effectively
Strengthening Employee Assistance Programs
Assessing the Value of Financial Disclosure
Advancing Polygraph Research
Making the Clearance Process More Efficient Through Automation
Conclusion


V. Information Age Insecurity: (152K)
Federal Government Information Security and the National Information Infrastructure
The Growing Threat to Information Systems Security
The Improving Federal Response
Improving Oversight Mechanisms
Enhancing Executive Branch Oversight and Policy Formulation
Enhancing Congressional Oversight and Policy Formulation
Addressing Current Problems
Preventing Redundancies in Technology Development
Promoting Government-Industry Cooperation
Discouraging the Use of Classification as an Alternative to Effective Information Systems Security
Encouraging Greater Accountability and Leadership
Planning for the Future
Disseminating Threat Information
Increasing Awareness of Computer Attacks
Developing Auditing and Intrusion Detection Capabilities
Including Security in Automation Projects
Professionalizing Information Systems Security
Strengthening Information Technology Training and Awareness
Conclusion


VI. Appendices:
A. Secrecy: A Brief Account of the American Experience (746K)
B. Commission's Authorizing Statute (17K)
C. Summary Recommendations (11K)
D. Biographical Information (11K)
E. Acknowledgments (15K)
F. List of Commission Meetings and Programs (33K)
G. Major Reviews of the U.S. Secrecy System (9K)
H. Acronyms and Abbreviations (7K)

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This document was sponsored by the U.S. House of Representatives and the United States Senate on the United States Government Printing Office web site.