Press/Journalists

Press Release
April 6, 2005

Information Security Oversight Office Releases FY2004 Annual Report

Washington, D.C. . .The Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO) has released its Report to the President for 2004. The Report is accessible on its web site, located at www.archives.gov/isoo/.

Within the next two months, hard copies of the Report will be available in ISOO’s offices in Room 100 of the National Archives Building, 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20408-0001, or by contacting ISOO—telephone, 202-219-5250; fax, 202-219-5385; or e-mail, isoo@nara.gov.

The Report profiles data about the Government-wide security classification program, primarily during Fiscal Year 2004. In his transmittal letter to the President included in the Report, ISOO Director J. William Leonard notes:

One of the most notable developments of the year occurred when the National Industrial Security Program Policy Advisory Committee approved a "Declaration of Principles for Reciprocity of Access Eligibility Determinations Within Industry." Provided this declaration is uniformly implemented, it will provide some relief to the current personnel security clearance crisis within industry.

Director Leonard notes further:

Also of note was your appointment of members to the Public Interest Declassification Board. This Board will contribute to the declassification of records on specific subjects of extraordinary public interest that do not undermine the national security interests of the United States.

In the body of the report Director Leonard, in discussing the consistent criticism of overclassification, writes:

One of the most effective steps agencies can take to address these concerns is to ensure that classification becomes an informed, deliberate decision rather than one committed by rote. . . . The American people expect and deserve nothing less than that we make the right classification decisions each and every day.

In addition to the data regarding declassification, highlights of the Report also include:

  • Data on the number of authorized classifiers: The Report notes that the number of authorized original classifiers throughout the executive branch decreased by 1 percent, to 4,007.

  • Data on the actions of the Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel (ISCAP): During Fiscal Year 2004, the ISCAP decided upon 159 documents that remained fully or partially classified upon the completion of agency processing. It declassified information in 26 percent of the documents that it decided upon; declassifying the entirety of the remaining classified information in 11 documents (7 percent) and declassifying some portions while affirming the classification of other portions in 30 of the documents (19 percent). The ISCAP fully affirmed the prior agency decisions in their entirety for 118 documents (74 percent).

  • Data on Declassification: Under the automatic and systematic review declassification programs, agencies declassified 28,413,690 pages of historically valuable records. Under mandatory review, agencies declassified in full 224,342 pages; declassified in part 64,443 pages; and retained classification in full on 15,590 pages.

Established in 1978, ISOO is responsible to the President for overseeing the Government-wide security classification program, and receives policy and program guidance from the National Security Council. ISOO has been a component of the National Archives and Records Administration since 1995. ISOO reports to the President from prior years are also accessible on its web site.

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For PRESS information, please contact the National Archives Public Affairs Staff at (202) 501-5526.

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