2016-07-28_6-20-59


Background


The
following was released by the Office of Government Information
Services (OGIS) on July 27, 2016.


Today
we are releasing a report
on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) program at the United States Secret
Service (USSS), the fifth in our series of assessments of FOIA programs at
components of the Department of Homeland Security. Like other OGIS reports on
agency FOIA program assessments, the report includes findings and
recommendations about the USSS FOIA Program.


USSS’s
FOIA Program is centralized; program offices search for responsive records and
the FOIA office processes them and responds to the requester. USSS accepts
requests by mail, email, online using the DHS online submission form, or
through the DHS FOIA app by mobile phone.


Between
Fiscal Year (FY) 2009 and FY 2015, the USSS FOIA Program received an average of
almost 1,300 requests per year, ranging from a low of 897 in FY 2011 to a high
of 1,595 in FY 2012. From FY 2009 to FY 2015, the backlog at USSS increased by
almost 86 percent from 426 requests to 791 requests. During the same period,
the number of requests USSS received rose by about 52 percent and the number of
requests processed grew by about 29 percent. USSS’s FOIA staff also grew by
almost 38 percent between FY 2009 and FY 2015.


Among
our recommendations
are that USSS:


  • Adopt management controls and continue working towards
    using metrics in employee performance goals;
  • Create a formal data-driven backlog reduction plan;
  • Ensure the FOIA branch has sufficient IT support; and
  • Regularly communicate with requesters about the status
    of requests, particularly regarding the oldest cases.


We
will follow up with USSS in 120 days to learn what actions it has taken to
address our findings and recommendations.


Office of Government Information Services Compliance Review
of United States Secret Service FOIA Program



 Office
of Government Information Services Compliance Review of United States Secret
Service FOIA Program
[23 Pages, 1.3MB]

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