Wednesday, March 28, 2007

e-FOIA reviewed by the National Security Archive

"The Freedom of Information Act enables the public to obtain information from the federal government to ascertain... "what the government is up to."...a government shrouded in secrecy is not a government by the people and for the people."

It is far less burdensome and costly for federal agencies to post basic and most frequently requested information online than to respond separately to many individual requests for the same information when that information cannot be accessed on agency Web sites.

While the National Security Archive audit highlights some chief offenders of E-FOIA, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (a Department of Homeland Security component) and the Air Force, the audit also compliments certain federal branches, such as NASA for proactively posting records of great interest to the public (like the Columbia Space Shuttle disaster) and the Department of Education for providing guidance and tools like online forms for FOIA requesters.

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