FAS: James Clapper Asks Intell Agency Leaders to Help Review Data Classification Practices

James Clapper
James Clapper

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper urged the heads of U.S. intelligence agencies to review guidelines for data classification and identify obsolete secrecy policies that should be removed, the Federation of American Scientists reported Wednesday.

Steven Aftergood writes Clapper told intelligence agency directors in a March 23 memo obtained by FAS to “take a leading role in reducing targeted classification activities that could extend to the larger federal government.”

He asked them to examine the feasibility of cutting the number of original classification authorities in their respective organizations and to provide input on requirements that will be needed to implement a discretionary declassification program.

Clapper, a 2016 Wash100 recipient, also wants to know the potential advantages and disadvantages of creating an intelligence community-wide classification guide and if the confidential-level designation can be eliminated from agency guides.

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