On July 28, 2017, I submitted a FOIA request to the CIA for copies of all correspondence relating to security clearances granted by the agency between January 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017. The documents requested included emails sent between CIA personnel regarding my case as well as any other cases related to security clearance investigations conducted by or on behalf of the agency. I also asked for information about how many individuals had their security clearances revoked during this period; what procedures were followed when revoking someone’s clearance; whether anyone involved in the revocation process was disciplined; and whether there was any discussion among employees about recommending that I be denied a security clearance. In addition to requesting emails from mid-2016 through June 2017, I inquired if further responsive records could be found beyond these dates since they may have been destroyed after being written but before being archived.
In response to my inquiry, the CIA informed me that it would not produce responsive records because it did not consider them properly within its control or possibly subject to disclosure under FOIA Exemptions 7(A)(3), 7(C) and/or 9(B). However, even though some electronic files might have been lost prior to archiving them at one point in time according an internal instruction dated May 27, 2012 (which appears on page 4 of last year’s annual report), it is still possible that such responsive material existed earlier than this date. Therefore elements from outside those timeframes discussed below are also considered potentially