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Title 18 Part 3a

Title 18 → Chapter I → Subchapter A → Part 3a

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 18 Part 3a

e-CFR data is current as of August 19, 2019

Title 18Chapter ISubchapter A → Part 3a


Title 18: Conservation of Power and Water Resources


§3a.1   Purpose.

This part 3a describes the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission program to govern the classification, downgrading, declassification, and safeguarding of national security information. The provisions and requirements cited herein are applicable to the entire agency except that material pertaining to personnel security shall be safeguarded by the Personnel Security Officer and shall not be considered classified material for the purpose of this part.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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§3a.2   Authority.

Official information or material referred to as classified in this part is expressly exempted from public disclosure by 5 U.S.C. 552(b)(1). Wrongful disclosure thereof is recognized in the Federal Criminal Code as providing a basis for prosecution. E.O. 11652, March 8, 1972 (37 FR 5209, March 10, 1972), identifies the information to be protected, prescribes classification, downgrading, declassification, and safeguarding procedures to be followed and establishes a monitoring system to insure its effectiveness. National Security Council Directive Governing the Classification, Downgrading, Declassification and Safeguarding of National Security Information, May 17, 1972 (37 FR 10053, May 19, 1972), implements E.O. 11652.

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Classification

§3a.11   Classification of official information.

(a) Security Classification Categories. Information or material which requires protection against unauthorized disclosure in the interest of the national defense or foreign relations of the United States (hereinafter collectively termed national security) is classified Top Secret, Secret or Confidential, depending upon the degree of its significance to national security. No other categories are to be used to identify official information or material requiring protection in the interest of national security, except as otherwise expressly provided by statute. These classification categories are defined as follows:

(1) Top Secret. Top Secret refers to national security information or material which requires the highest degree of protection. The test for assigning Top Secret classification is whether its unauthorized disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security. Examples of exceptionally grave damage include armed hostilities against the United States or its allies; disruption of foreign relations vitally affecting the national security; the compromise of vital national defense plans or complex cryptologic and communications intelligence systems; the revelation of sensitive intelligence operations; and the disclosure of scientific or technological developments vital to national security. This classification is to be used with the utmost restraint.

(2) Secret. Secret refers to national security information or material which requires a substantial degree of protection. The test for assigning Secret classification shall be whether its unauthorized disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause serious damage to the national security. Examples of serious damage include disruption of foreign relations significantly affecting the national security; significant impairment of a program or policy directly related to the national security; revelation of significant military plans or intelligence operations; and compromise of significant scientific or technological developments relating to national security. The classification Secret shall be sparingly used.

(3) Confidential. Confidential refers to national security information or material which requires protection, but not to the degree described in paragraphs (a) (1) and (2) of this section. The test for assigning Confidential classification shall be whether its unauthorized disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause damage to the national security.

(b) Classified information will be assigned the lowest classification consistent with its proper protection. Documents will be classified according to their own content and not necessarily according to their relationship to other documents.

(c) The overall classification of a file or group of physically connected documents will be at least as high as that of the most highly classified document therein. When put together as a unit or complete file, the classification of the highest classified document contained therein will be marked on a cover sheet, file folder (front and back), or other similar covering, and on any transmittal letters, comments, or endorsements.

(d) Administrative Control Designations. These designations are not security classification designations, but are used to indicate a requirement to protect material from unauthorized disclosure. Material identified under the provisions of this subparagraph will be handled and protected in the same manner as material classified Confidential except that it will not be subject to the central control system described in §3a.71. Administrative Control designations are:

(1) For Official Use Only. This designation is used to identify information which does not require protection in the interest of national security, but requires protection in accordance with statutory requirements or in the public interest and which is exempt from public disclosure under 5 U.S.C. 552(b) and §388.105(n) of this chapter.

(2) Limited Official Use. This administrative control designation is used by the Department of State to identify nondefense information requiring protection from unauthorized access. Material identified with this notation must be limited to persons having a definite need to know in order to fulfill their official responsibilities.

(e) A letter or other correspondence which transmits classified material will be classified at a level at least as high as that of the highest classified attachment or enclosure. This is necessary to indicate immediately to persons who receive or handle a group of documents the highest classification involved. If the transmittal document does not contain classified information, or if the information in it is classified lower than in an enclosure, the originator will include a notation to that effect. (See §3a.31(e).)

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 225, 47 FR 19055, May 3, 1982]

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§3a.12   Authority to classify official information.

(a) The authority to classify information or material originally under E.O. 11652 is restricted to those offices within the executive branch which are concerned with matters of national security, and is limited to the minimum number absolutely required for efficient administration.

(b) The authority to classify information or material originally as Top Secret is to be exercised only by such officials as the President may designate in writing and by the heads of the following departments and agencies and such of their principal staff officials as the heads of these departments and agencies may designate in writing;

Such offices in the Executive Office of the President as the President may designate in writing.

Central Intelligence Agency.

Atomic Energy Commission.

Department of State.

Department of the Treasury.

Department of Defense.

Department of the Army.

Department of the Navy.

Department of the Air Force.

U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency

Department of Justice.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Agency for International Development.

(c) The authority to classify information or material originally as Secret is exercised only by:

(1) Officials who have Top Secret classification authority under §3a.11(b); and

(2) The heads of the following departments and agencies and such principal staff officials as they may designate in writing:

Department of Transportation.

Federal Communications Commission.

Export-Import Bank of the United States.

Department of Commerce.

U.S. Civil Service Commission.

U.S. Information Agency.

General Services Administration.

Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

Civil Aeronautics Board.

Federal Maritime Commission.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

National Science Foundation.

Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

(d) The authority to classify information or material originally as Confidential is exercised by officials who have Top Secret or Secret classification authority.

(e) Pursuant to E.O. 11652, the authority to classify information or material originally as Secret or Confidential in the FERC shall be exercised only by the Chairman, the Vice Chairman, and the Executive Director. When an incumbent change occurs in these positions, the name of the new incumbent will be reported to the Interagency Classification Review Committee NSC.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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§3a.13   Classification responsibility and procedure.

(a) Each FERC official who has classifying authority (§3a.12) shall be held accountable for the propriety of the classifications attributed to him. Unnecessary classification and overclassification shall be avoided. Classification shall be solely on the basis of national security considerations. In no case shall information be classified in order to conceal inefficiency or administrative error, to prevent embarrassment to the FERC or any of its officials or employees, or to prevent for any other reason the release of information which does not require protection in the interest of national security.

(b) Each classified document shall show on its face its classification and whether it is subject to or exempt from the General Declassification Schedule (§3a.22(b)). It also shall show the office of origin, the date of preparation and classification and, to the extent practicable, be so marked as to indicate which portions are classified, at what level, and which portions are not classified in order to facilitate excerpting and other use. Material which merely contains references to classified materials, which references do not reveal classified information, shall not be classified.

(c) Material classified under this part shall indicate on its face the identity of the highest authority authorizing the classification. Where the individual who signs or otherwise authenticates a document or item has also authorized the classification, no further annotation as to his identity is required.

(d) Classified information or material furnished to the United States by a foreign government or international organization shall either retain its original classification or be assigned a U.S. classification. In either case, the classification shall assure a degree of protection equivalent to that required by the government or international organization which furnished the information or material.

(e) Whenever information or material classified by an authorized official is incorporated in another document or other material by any person other than the classifier, the previously assigned security classification category shall be reflected thereon together with the identity of the classifier.

(f) As a holder of classified information or material, the FERC shall observe and respect the classification assigned by the originator. If it is believed that there is unnecessary classification; that the assigned classification is improper, or that the document is subject to declassification under E.O. 11652, the FERC will so inform the originator who is then required by the Executive order to reexamine the classification.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Declassification and Downgrading

§3a.21   Authority to downgrade and declassify.

(a) The authority to downgrade and declassify information or material shall be exercised as follows:

(1) Information or material may be downgraded or declassified by the official authorizing the original classification, by a successor or by a supervisory official of either.

(2) Downgrading and declassification authority may also be exercised by an official specifically authorized under regulations issued by the head of the Department listed in sections 2 A and B of E.O. 11652, March 10, 1972.

(3) In the case of classified information or material transferred pursuant to statute or Executive order in conjunction with a transfer of function and not merely for storage purposes, the receiving department or agency shall be deemed to be the originating department or agency for all purposes under E.O. 11652, including downgrading and declassification.

(4) In the case of classified information or material not officially transferred under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, but originated in a department or agency which has since ceased to exist, each department or agency in possession shall be deemed to be the originating department or agency for all purposes. Such information or material may be downgraded and declassified after consulting with any other departments or agencies having an interest in the subject matter.

(5) Classified information or material transferred to the General Services Administration for accession to the Archives of the United States shall be downgraded and declassified by the Archivist of the United States in accordance with E.O. 11652, directives of the President issued through the National Security Council, and pertinent regulations of the departments and agencies.

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§3a.22   Declassification and downgrading.

(a) When classified information of material no longer requires the level of protection assigned to it, it shall be downgraded or declassified in order to preserve the effectiveness and integrity of the classification system. The Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Executive Director exercise downgrading and declassification authority in the FERC.

(b) Information and material classified prior to June 1, 1972, and assigned to Group 4 under E.O. 10501, as amended by E.O. 10964, unless declassified earlier by the original classifying authority, shall be declassified and downgraded in accordance with the following General Declassification Schedule.

(1) Top Secret. Information or material originally classified TOP SECRET becomes automatically downgraded to Secret at the end of the second full calendar year following the year in which it was originated, downgraded to Confidential at the end of the fourth full calendar year following the year in which it was originated, and declassified at the end of the 10th full calendar year following the year in which it was originated.

(2) Secret. Information and material originally classified Secret becomes automatically downgraded to Confidential at the end of the second full calendar year following the year in which it was originated, and declassified at the end of the eighth full calendar year following the year in which it was originated.

(3) Confidential. Information and material originally classified Confidential becomes automatically declassified at the end of the sixth full calendar year following the year in which it was originated.

(c) To the fullest extent applicable, there shall be indicated on each such FERC originated classified document whether it can be downgraded or declassified at a date earlier than under the above schedule, or after a specified event, or upon the removal of classified attachments or enclosures. Classified information in the possession of the Federal Power Commission, but not bearing a marking for automatic downgrading or declassification, will be marked or designated by the Chairman or the Security Officer designated by §3a.51 hereof for automatic downgrading or declassification in accordance with the rules and regulations of the department or agency which originally classified the information or material.

(d) When the FERC official having classification authority downgrades or cancels the classification of a document before its classification status changes automatically, each addressee to whom the document was transmitted shall be notified of the change unless the addressee has previously advised that the document was destroyed. Addressees must be notified similarly when it has been determined that a document must be upgraded.

(e) When classified information from more than one source is incorporated into a new document or other material, the document or other material shall be classified, downgraded, or declassified in accordance with the provisions of E.O. 11652 and NSC directives thereunder applicable to the information requiring the greatest protection.

(f) All information or material classified prior to June 1, 1972, other than that described in paragraph (b) of this section, is excluded from the General Classification Schedule. However, at any time after the expiration of 10 years from the date of origin it shall be subject to classification review and disposition by FERC provided:

(1) A department or agency or member of the public requests review;

(2) The request describes the record with sufficient particularity to enable FERC to identify it; and

(3) The record can be obtained with a reasonable amount of effort.

(g) All classified information or material which is 30 years old or more will be declassified under the following conditions:

(1) All information and material classified after June 1, 1972, will, whether or not declassification has been requested, become automatically declassified at the end of 30 full calendar years after the date of its original classification except for such specifically identified information or material which the Chairman personally determines in writing to require continued protection because such continued protection is essential to the national security, or disclosure would place a person in immediate jeopardy. In such case, the Chairman also will specify the period of continued classification.

(2) All information and material classified before June 1, 1972 and more than 30 years old will be systematically reviewed for declassification by the Archivist of the United States by the end of the 30th full calendar year following the year in which it was originated. In his review, the Archivist will separate and keep protected only such information or material as is specifically identified by the Chairman in accordance with paragraph (g) (1) of this section. In such case, the Chairman also will specify the period of continued classification.

(3) The Executive Director, acting for the Chairman, is assigned to assist the Archivist of the United States in the exercise of his responsibilities indicated in paragraph (g)(2) of this section. He will:

(i) Provide guidance and assistance to archival employees in identifying and separating those materials originated in FERC which are deemed to require continued classification; and

(ii) Develop a list for submission to the Chairman which identifies the materials so separated, with recommendations concerning continued classification. The Chairman will then make the determination required under paragraphs (g) (1) and (2) of this section and cause a list to be created which identifies the documents included in the determination, indicates the reason for continued classification, and specifies the date on which such material shall be declassified.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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§3a.23   Review of classified material for declassification purposes.

(a) All information and material classified after June 1, 1972, and determined in accordance with Chapter 21, title 44, United States Code, to be of sufficient historical or other value to warrant preservation shall be systematically reviewed on a timely basis for the purpose of making such information and material publicly available according to the declassification determination at the time of classification. During each calendar year the FPC shall segregate to the maximum extent possible all such information and material warranting preservation and becoming declassified at or prior to the end of such year. Promptly after the end of such year the FERC, or the Archives of the United States if transferred thereto, shall make the declassified information and material available to the public to the extent permitted by law.

(b) Departments and agencies and members of the public may direct requests for review for declassification, as described in §3a.22(f), to:

Office of the Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20426.

The Office of the Secretary will assign the request to the appropriate Bureau or Office for action and will acknowledge in writing the receipt of the request. If the request requires the rendering of services for which fair and equitable fees should be charged pursuant to Title 5 of the Independent Offices Appropriations Act, 1952, 31 U.S.C. 483a, the requester shall be so notified. The Bureau or Office which is assigned action will make a determination within 30 days of receipt or explain why further time is necessary. If at the end of 60 days from receipt of the request for review no determination has been made, the requester may apply to the FERC Review Committee (paragraph (g) of this section) for a determination. Should the Bureau or Office assigned the action on a request for review determine that under the criteria set forth in section 5(B) of E.O. 11652 continued classification is required, the requester will be notified promptly and, whenever possible, provided with a brief statement as to why the requested information or material cannot be declassified. The requester may appeal any such determination to the FERC Review Committee and the notice of determination will advise him of this right.

(c) The FERC Review Committee will establish procedures to review and act within 30 days upon all applications and appeals regarding requests for declassification. The chairman, acting through the committee, is authorized to overrule previous determinations in whole or in part when, in its judgment, continued protection is no longer required. If the committee determines that continued classification is required under the criteria of section 5(B) of E.O. 11652, it will promptly so notify the requester and advise him that he may appeal the denial to the Interagency Classification Review Committee.

(d) A request by a department or agency or a member of the public to review for declassification documents more than 30 years old shall be referred directly to the Archivist of the United States, and he shall have the requested documents reviewed for declassification. If the information or material requested has been transferred to the General Services Administration for accession into the Archives, the Archivist shall, together with the chairman, have the requested documents reviewed for declassification. Classification shall be continued in either case only when the chairman makes the personal determination indicated in §3a.22(g)(1). The Archivist shall notify the requester promptly of such determination and of his right to appeal the denial to the Interagency Classification Review Committee.

(e) For purposes of administrative determinations under paragraph (b), (c), or (d) of this section, the burden is on the FERC to show that continued classification is warranted. Upon a determination that the classified material no longer warrants classification, it will be declassified and made available to the requester if not otherwise exempt from disclosure under section 552(b) of Title 5, U.S.C. (Freedom of Information Act) or other provisions of law.

(f) A request for classification review must describe the document with sufficient particularity to enable the FERC to identify it and obtain it with a reasonable amount of effort. Whenever a request is deficient in its description of the record sought, the requester will be asked to provide additional identifying information whenever possible. Before denying a request on the ground that it is unduly burdensome, the requester will be asked to limit his request to records that are reasonably obtainable. If the requester then does not describe the records sought with sufficient particularity, or the record requested cannot be obtained with a reasonable amount of effort, the requester will be notified of the reasons why no action will be taken and of his right to appeal such decision.

(g) The FERC Review Committee will consist of the Executive Director, as Committee Chairman, the Secretary, and the Director, Office of Public Information, as members. In addition to the activities described in this paragraph, the Review Committee has authority to act on all suggestions and complaints with respect to administration of E.O. 11652 and this part 3a.

(h) The FERC Review Committee is also responsible for recommending to the chairman appropriate administrative action to correct abuse or violation of any provision of E.O. 11652 or NSC directives thereunder, including notifications by warning letter, formal reprimand, and to the extent permitted by law, suspension without pay and removal.

(i) The Chairman of the Review Committee will submit through the chairman, FERC, a report quarterly to the Interagency Classification Review Committee, NSC, of actions on classification review requests, classification abuses, and unauthorized disclosures.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Classification Markings and Special Notations

§3a.31   Classification markings and special notations.

(a) After the chairman, the vice chairman, or the executive director determines that classified information is contained in an original document or other item, the appropriate marking, i.e., Secret or Confidential, will be applied as indicated herein. In addition, each classified document will reflect its date of origin and the Bureau, Office, or Regional Office responsible for its preparation and issuance, and the identity of the highest authority authorizing the classification. Where the individual who signs or otherwise authenticates the document or other item has also authorized the classification, no further annotation as to his identity is required. Each classified document will also show on its face whether it is subject to or exempt from the General Declassification Schedule described in §3a.22(b).

(1) For marking documents which are subject to the General Declassification Schedule, the following stamp will be used:

(Top Secret, Secret, or Confidential) Classified by ______. Subject to General Declassification Schedule of E.O. 11652, automatically downgraded at 2-year intervals and declassified on December 31, ______ (insert year).

(2) For marking documents which are to be automatically declassified on a given event or date earlier than the General Declassification Schedule the following stamp will be used:

(Top Secret, Secret, or Confidential) Classified by ______. Automatically declassified on __________ (effective date or event).

(3) For marking documents which are exempt from the General Declassification Schedule the following stamp will be used:

(Top Secret, Secret, or Confidential) Classified by ______. Exempt from General Declassification Schedule of E.O. 11652, Exemption Category (section 5B (1), (2), (3), or (4). Automatically declassified on __________ (effective date or event, if any).

(b) Should the classifier fail to mark such document with one of the foregoing stamps, the document shall be deemed to be subject to the General Declassification Schedule. The person who signs or finally approves a document or other material containing classified information shall be deemed to be the classifier. If the classifier is other than such person he shall be identified on the stamp as indicated.

(c) On documents, the classification markings Secret and Confidential will be stamped in red ink, printed, or written in letters considerably larger than those used in the text of the document. On documents which are typewritten in elite, pica or executive size type, the above markings should be in letters not less than three-sixteenths inch in height. No markings, other than those indicated above, are authorized to designate that a document or material requires protection in the interests of national security. The overall classification assigned to a document will be conspicuously marked on the top and bottom of each page and on the outside of the front and back covers, if any. Letters of transmittal, endorsements, routing slips, or any other papers of any size which conceal or partially conceal the cover, the title page, or first page, will bear the marking of the overall classification.

(d) Whenever a classified document contains either more than one security classification category or unclassified information, each section, part or paragraph should be marked to the extent practicable to show its classification category or that it is unclassified.

(e) Letters of transmittal or other covering documents which are classified solely because of classified enclosures or attachments, or which are classified in a lower category than such enclosures or attachments, will bear either of the following markings, as appropriate.

(1) If the covering document is classified on its own, but has enclosures or attachments of a higher classification, or is a component (i.e., an endorsement or comment) or a file in which other components bear a higher classification:

Regarded

(appropriate classification)

When separated from

(identify higher classified components)

(2) If unclassified when separated from its classified enclosures or attachments:

When the Attachments Are Removed, This Transmittal Letter Becomes Unclassified.

(f) In addition to the classification category markings prescribed above, the first or title page of each classified document will contain instructions as appropriate, in accordance with the following:

(1) Regarding instructions. The declassification and downgrading notation, as described in §3a.31(g) will be applied to classified documents only. The notation will not be carried forward to unclassified letters of transmittals or other cover documents. When such cover documents are classified by their own content, they will be annotated with the notwithstanding instructions which pertain to the enclosures.

(2) “Special Handling” notation. Classified information will not be released or disclosed to any foreign national without proper specific authorization. This applies even when the classified material does not bear the special handling notice described below. The special handling notice indicated only that the material has been reviewed and a specific determination made that the information is not releasable to foreign nationals. If it is anticipated that the handling or distribution of a classified document will make it liable to inadvertent disclosure to foreign nationals it will be marked with a separate special handling notation, which will be carried forward to letters of transmittals or other cover documents. The notation reads:

Special Handling Required Not Releasable to Foreign Nationals

(g) Whenever classified material is upgraded, downgraded, or declassified, the material will be marked to reflect:

(1) The change in classification.

(2) The authority for the action.

(3) The effective date.

(4) The person or unit taking the action.

When classification changes are made, the classification markings themselves will be changed or canceled, and each copy or item of the material will be marked with the citation of authority. The notation below will be used for this purpose:

Classification

(changed)

 

(canceled)

To
Effective on

(date)

Under authority of

(authorizing official or office)

By

(person or office taking action)

(h) In addition to the foregoing marking requirements, warning notices shall be displayed prominently on classified documents or materials as prescribed below. When display of these warning notices on the documents or other materials is not feasible, the warnings shall be included in the written notification of the assigned classification.

(1) Restricted data. For classified information or material containing restricted data as defined in the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended:

Restricted Data

This document contains restricted data as defined in the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. Its dissemination or disclosure to any unauthorized person is prohibited.

(2) Formerly restricted data. For classified information or material containing solely Formerly Restricted Data, as defined in section 142.d, Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended:

Formerly Restricted Data

Unauthorized disclosure subject to administrative and criminal sanctions. Handle as restricted data in foreign dissemination, section 114.b., Atomic Energy Act, 1954.

(3) Information other than restricted data or formerly restricted data. For classified information or material furnished to persons outside the Executive Branch of Government other than as described in paragraphs (h)(1) and (2) of this section.

National Security Information

Unauthorized disclosure subject to criminal sanctions.

(4) Sensitive intelligence information. For classified information or material relating to sensitive intelligence sources and methods, the following warning notice shall be used, in addition to and in conjunction with those prescribed in paragraph (h)(1), (2), or (3), of this section, as appropriate:

Warning Notice—Sensitive Intelligence Sources and Methods Involved

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Access to Classified Materials

§3a.41   Access requirements.

(a) The Personnel Security Officer, on a continuing current basis, will certify to the Security Officer, the head of each bureau and office and each regional engineer, the names of officers and employees who have been granted a security clearance for access to classified material and the level of such clearance (Top Secret, Secret, Confidential). The Personnel Security Officer will maintain accurate and current listings of personnel who have been granted security clearances in accordance with the standards and criteria of Executive Orders 10450 and 10865 and as prescribed by this part.

(b) In addition to a security clearance, staff members must have a need for access to classified information or material in connection with the performance of duties. The determination for the need-to-know will be made by the official having responsibility for the classified information or material.

(c) When a staff member no longer requires access to classified information or material in connection with performance of official duties, the Personnel Security Officer will administratively withdraw the security clearance. Additionally, when a staff member no longer needs access to a particular security classification category, the security clearance will be adjusted to the classification category required. In both cases, this action will be without prejudice to the staff member's eligibility for a security clearance or upgrading of category should the need again arise.

(d) Access to classified information or material originated by the FERC may be authorized to persons outside the Executive Branch of the Government engaged in historical research and to former Presidential appointees as provided in paragraphs VI B and C of the NSC directive dated May 17, 1972. The determination of access authorization will be made by the Chairman.

(e) Except as otherwise provided in section 102 of the National Security Act of 1947, 61 Stat. 495, 50 U.S.C. 403, classified information or material originating in one department or agency shall not be disseminated outside any other department or agency to which it has been made available without the consent of the originating organization.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Security Officers

§3a.51   Designation of security officers.

(a) The Director, Office of Administrative Operations (OAO) is designated as Top Secret Control Officer and Security Officer for classified material for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The Director, OAO, will designate alternate Top Secret Control Officers and alternated Security Officers, who will be authorized, subject to such limitations as may be imposed by the Director, to perform the duties for which the Top Secret Control Officer and Security Officer is responsible. As used hereinafter, the terms Top Secret Control Officer and Security Officer shall be interpreted as including the alternate Top Secret Control Officers and Security Officers. The FERC Security Officer is authorized and directed to insure the proper application of the provisions of Executive Order 11652 and of this part.

(b) Regional Engineers are designated as Regional Security Officers for the purpose of carrying out the functions assigned herein.

(c) The Director, OAO, will appoint in writing appropriately cleared staff members to act as couriers for transmittal, as necessary, for classified information or material.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Storage and Custody of Classified Information

§3a.61   Storage and custody of classified information.

(a) Unless specifically authorized by the Chairman or Executive Director, classified information and materials within the Washington office will be stored only in GSA-approved security containers in the Office of Administrative Operations. Such containers will be of steel construction with built-in, three-position, dial-type, manipulation-proof, changeable combination locks.

(b) A custodian and one or more alternate custodians will be assigned responsibility for the security of each container under his jurisdiction in which classified information is stored. Such assignment will be made a matter of record by executing GSA Optional Form 63, Classified Container Registration, and affixing it to the container concerned. Custodians will be responsible for assuring that combinations are changed as required and that locking and checking functions are accomplished daily in compliance with paragraphs (g) and (h) of this section.

(c) GSA Optional Form 63 is a 3-sheet form, each sheet having a specific purpose and disposition, as follows:

(1) Sheet 1 records the names, addresses, and home telephone numbers of the custodian and alternate custodians. Sheet 1 is affixed to the outside of the container.

(2) Sheet 2 records the combination of the container and is placed inside Sheet 3, which is an envelope.

(3) Sheet 3, an envelope, is a carbon copy of Sheet 1. When the container combination is recorded on Sheet 2, it is sealed inside Sheet 3 which is then forwarded to the FERC Top Secret Control Officer.

(d) GSA Optional Form 62, Safe or Cabinet Security Record, will be attached conspicuously to the outside of each container used to store classified information. The form is used to certify the opening and locking of a container, and the checking of a container at the end of each working day or whenever it is opened and locked during the day.

(e) Combinations of containers used to store classified materials will be assigned classifications equal to the highest category of classified information stored therein. Active combinations are subject to the safeguarding and receipting requirements of this instruction. Superseded combinations become declassified automatically and certificates of destruction therefore are unnecessary.

(f) Knowledge of or access to the combination of a container used for the storage of classified material will be given only to those appropriately cleared individuals who are authorized access to the information stored therein.

(g) Combinations of containers used to store classified material will be changed at least once a year. A combination will be changed also whenever anyone knowing or having access to it is transferred; when the combination has been subjected to compromise; when the security classification of the container is upgraded; and at any other time as may be deemed necessary. Combinations to locks on security containers will be changed only by individuals having a security clearance equal to the highest category of classified material stored therein. Changing lock combinations is a responsibility of OAO. (See FPC Special Instruction No. AM 2162.2, Periodic Change of Combination on Locks.)

(h) The individual who unlocks a container will indicate the date and time and initial entry on GSA Optional Form 62. At the close of each workday, or when the container is locked at earlier time, the individual locking the container will make the appropriate entry on GSA Optional Form 62. An individual other than the one who locked the container will check to insure that it is properly closed and locked and will make the appropriate entry on GSA Optional Form 62. When a container has not been opened during the day, the checker will enter the date and the notation “Not Opened” and make appropriate entry in the “Checked By” column.

(i) The red and white reversible “Closed-Open” cardboard sign will be used on all classified containers to indicate whether the container is open or locked.

(j) Typewriter ribbons used in the preparation of classified information will be safeguarded in the manner appropriate for the degree of classification involved. Cloth ribbons are considered insecure until both upper and lower lines have been cycled through the typewriter at least twice. Carbon paper or film ribbons are insecure at all times since the imprint thereon cannot be obliterated and such ribbon must be destroyed as classified waste. Insecure ribbons will not be left in typewriters overnight but will be stored in appropriate classified container.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Accountability For Classified Material

§3a.71   Accountability for classified material.

(a) The Office of Administrative Operations is the central control registry for the receipt and dispatch of classified material in the Washington office and maintains the accountability register of all classified material. In addition, each Regional Engineer will maintain an accountability register for classified material of which he has custody.

(b) With the exception of the Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Executive Director, no individual, bureau, or office is authorized to receive, open, or dispatch classified material other than the authorized personnel in OAO or the Regional Engineers. Classified material received by other than the OAO or Regional Engineers will be delivered promptly and unopened to the Security Officer or Regional Engineer in order that it may be brought under accountable control.

(c) Each classified document received by or originating in the FERC will be assigned an individual control number by the central control registry, OAO. Control numbers will be assigned serially within a calendar year. The first digit of the four-digit control number will indicate the calendar year in which the document was originated or received in the FERC. Control numbers assigned to top secret material will be separate from the sequence for other classified material and will be prefixed by the letters “TS”. Examples:

9006—Sixth classified document controlled by the central control registry in calendar year 1969.

TS 1006—Sixth Top Secret document controlled by the central control registry in calendar year 1971.

(d) The accounting system for control of classified documents will be effected through the use of FERC Form 55, Classified Document Control Record and Receipt. This form will be used to:

(1) Register an accurate, unclassified description of the document; its assigned control number; and the date it is placed under accountability.

(2) Serve as the accountability register for classified material.

(3) Record all changes in status or custody of the document during its classification life or the period it is retained under accountability in the FERC.

(4) Serve as the principal basis for all classified document inventory and tracer actions.

(5) Serve as a receipt for the central control registry when the document is transferred.

(e) For Top Secret documents only, an access register, FPC Form 1286, Top Secret Access Record, for recording the names of all individuals having access to the document, will be prepared in addition to FPC Form 55. In addition, a physical inventory of all Top Secret documents will be conducted during June of each year by the Top Secret Control Officer and witnessed by a staff member holding a Top Secret clearance.

(f) When classified documents are regraded, declassified, or destroyed, the change in status will be recorded in the file copy of FPC Form 55 in the central control registry.

(g) Classified documents will not be reproduced by any means except on the specific written authority of the FPC Security Officer.

(h) In the Washington Office, classified material will be destroyed by OAO and will be accomplished by burning in the presence of a destroying official and a witnessing official. Destroying and witnessing officials will be alternate Security Officers from OAO. A record of destruction of each classified document will be maintained on FPC Form 1285. Classified Document Destruction Certificate. In addition, the date of destruction and the destruction certificate number will be recorded on the file copy of FPC Form 55 in the central control registry. The original signed copy of the destruction certificate will be retained in the central control registry. The duplicate copy will be retained by the destroying official. Regional Engineers will follow these instructions for destruction of classified material in their possession, except that the destroying official shall be the Regional Engineer and the witnessing official shall be any other individual having appropriate security clearance.

(i) It is the responsibility of any staff member who has knowledge of the loss or possible compromise of classified information immediately to report the circumstances to the Director, OAO. The Director, OAO, will notify the originating Department and any other interested Department of the loss or possible compromise in order that a damage assessment can be conducted. An immediate inquiry will be initiated by the Director, OAO, for the purpose of taking corrective action and for recommendations to the chairman, through the Review Committee, for appropriate administrative, disciplinary, or legal action.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Transmittal of Classified Material

§3a.81   Transmittal of classified material.

(a) A continuous receipting system, using copies of FERC Form 55, will record all transfers of classified items between elements or officials within the FERC. Receipts for transmittal of classified items from the central registry to the first recipient will be acknowledged on copy number one (original) of FERC Form 55. This copy will be returned to and become part of the central register, where it will remain as an active record until the item is either destroyed or transmitted outside the FERC control registry system. Receipts for subsequent transmittals through the FERC will be recorded on the remaining copies of FERC Form 55.

(b) A recipient will acknowledge receipt and assumption of custody of classified material exactly as it is described on FPC Form 55. If it is determined that parts are missing, it is incorrectly numbered, or otherwise recorded in error on FPC Form 55. The recipient will not sign for the material but will return it promptly to the transmitting element, notifying them accordingly.

(c) Whenever a classified or protected document is being internally transmitted, or is in use, it will be covered by either FERC Label 19, Top Secret Cover Sheet (yellow); FERC Label 20, Secret Cover Sheet (red); FERC Label 21, Confidential Cover Sheet (blue), or FERC Label 22, Official Use Only (Limited Official Use) green. In addition, the red back sheet, FERC Label 23, will be used. With the exception of the FERC Form 55, no transmittal paper or other material will be placed over the label, and no writing will be applied thereon.

(d) The transmission or transfer of custody of classified material outside of the FERC Washington offices or the Regional Offices will be covered by FERC Form 1284, Classified Document Receipt and/or Tracer, prepared in duplicate (one post card and one paper copy). The post card will be enclosed, along with the material being transferred, in the inner envelope, wrapping or container, and the paper copy retained in the central registry pending return of the signed post card.

(e) Classified material transmitted outside of the FERC Washington offices or the Regional Offices will be dispatched in two opaque envelopes or double wrapped in opaque wrapping paper. The outgoing material will be prepared for transmission by:

(1) Preparing and enclosing an appropriate receipt (see paragraph (d) of this section) in the inner envelope or wrapping.

(2) Addressing, return addressing, and sealing or taping the inner envelope or wrapping.

(3) Marking the security classification and other required notations on the front and back of the inner cover. If the nature of the contents deem it necessary or advisable, the inner cover may be marked with the following or a similar notation “To Be Opened By Addressee Only.” When this notation is used, an appropriate “Attention” line must be contained in the address on the outer envelope to insure delivery to the intended recipient.

(4) Enclosing the inner envelope or wrapping in an opaque outer envelope wrapper containing the appropriate address information. These outer covers will not contain any of the markings contained on the inner cover. If the outer cover does not fully conceal the markings on the inner envelope or wrapper, a sheet of plain paper should be folded around the inner wrapper to conceal the markings.

(f) Transmittal of Top Secret information and material shall be effected preferably by oral discussion in person between the officials concerned. Otherwise the transmission of Top Secret information and material shall be by specifically designated personnel, by State Department diplomatic pouch, by a messenger-courier system especially created for that purpose, over authorized communications circuits in encrypted form or by other means authorized by the National Security Council.

(g) Transmittal of material classified Secret or Confidential to any addressee in the 48 contiguous States and the District of Columbia, the State of Hawaii, the State of Alaska, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and Canadian Government installations by the FERC Washington offices or the Regional offices will be by registered mail only. Transmittal outside these specified areas will be as stated in paragraph C(2), Appendix B, of the NSC Directive of May 17, 1972.

[Order 470, 38 FR 5161, Feb. 26, 1973, as amended by Order 756, 77 FR 4893, Feb. 1, 2012]

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Data Index System

§3a.91   Data index system.

A data index system shall be established for Top Secret, Secret, and Confidential information in selected categories prescribed by the Interagency Classification Review Committee, in accordance with section VII of the National Security Council Directive Governing the Classification, Downgrading, Declassification, and Safeguarding of National Security Information, May 17, 1972.

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