Huge Increase in NSA FOIA(Freedom Of Information Act) Requests After Snowden Revelations
Ever since Edward Snowden first leaked details of the dragnet electronic spying programs run by the NSA, many of us are curious about what exactly the NSA knows about us. I'm one such person. I made a FOIA request for my own PRISM data, and published the NSA's reply here. I recently made another FOIA request. This time, my request was to find out how many requests, similar to my first request, had been filed. The numbers are smaller than I was hoping for, but it's still a 755% increase over the normal volume of NSA FOIA requests. Every one of the requests similar to mine received a similar reply; "We can't tell you if such records exist because its a State Secret." What a load of bullshit.
You can read the full reply to my latest FOIA request. I've transcribed it in full and put scanned images of it below.
Dear Mr. Greene:
This responds to your Freedom of Information Act(FOIA) request submitted via the Internet on 31 August 2013, which was received by this office on 3 September 2013, for "Seeking records pertaining to FOIA requests for information on programs that whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed, such as PRISM & XKeyscore. How many requests made, the nature of those requests, how many have been replied to, and what those replies entailed." Your request has been assigned Case Number 74631. For purposes of this request and based on the information you provided in your letter, you are considered and "all other" requester. As such, you are allowed 2 hours of search and the duplication of 100 pages at no cost. There are no assessable fees for this request.
Since 6 June 2013, NSA has received over 3400 new FOIA requests, the vast majority of which were from individuals requesting various records relating to themselves, including their phone numbers and/or emails. Out of the 3400, NSA has responded to over 3200 requests. Most of the 3200 have been in response to requests from individuals for information on themselves, to which our responses have been similar to the letter you received in response to your previous FOIA request 71194. The normal volume for the NSA FOIA Office is 1200-1800 requests per year. The FOIA Office does not maintain numbers or lists of requests by subject.
Correspondence related to your request should include the case number assigned to your request, which is included in the first paragraph of this letter. Your letter should be addressed to National Security Agency, FOIA Office (DJ4), 9800 Savage Road STE 6248, Ft. George G. Meade, MD 20755-6248 or may be sent by facsimile to 443-479-3612. If sent by fax, it should be marked for the attention of the FOIA office. The telephone number of the FOIA office is 301-688-6527.
Pamela N. Phillips
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