Searching for responsive records under FOIA works best when processors cross disciplines to collaborate with technology experts at their respective agencies. An OGIS assessment of the 2019 Chief FOIA Officer (CFO) reports shows that while a majority of agencies report using technology to facilitate efficiency in conducting searches, only about one in five agencies report … Continue reading Leveraging Technology in FOIA Searches
Providing estimated dates of completion can be a challenge—but it’s also the law. As we’ve previously noted, Congress amended FOIA in 2007 to require agencies to provide requesters with estimated dates of completion when asked. We think that estimated dates of completion are so important that we analyze their use as part of our agency … Continue reading Agencies Using Technology to Provide Estimated Dates of Completion
With the proliferation of smartphones and tablets has come the development of mobile apps for everything, it seems; now you can add FOIA to that list. This week the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the release of its new eFOIA mobile app. The app, the result of a partnership between the DHS Privacy Office … Continue reading FOIA: There’s an app for that!
We’re thrilled with the attention that FOIA is receiving in Open Government efforts, such as the National Action Plan. The National Archives and Record Administration (NARA), OGIS’s parent agency, is setting its own open government priorities for 2014-2016 in its third Open Government Plan, and we want to hear what you think. You can take … Continue reading Open Government: We Need Your Ideas!
It would seem that the use of electronic records would simplify the FOIA process; if agencies don’t have to reproduce and redact paper, that’s got to be easier, right? In reality, electronic records raise lots of questions for FOIA programs. For instance: If a requester asks for electronic copies of paper records -- requiring the … Continue reading Reboot your e-records knowledge July 24
Back in January, we reported that several Federal agencies had partnered to develop an online system aimed at expanding public access to information requested under FOIA. We’re pleased to report that FOIAonline is live! Beginning October 1, requesters seeking records from five Federal agencies can use FOIAonline to submit FOIA requests, track their progress, communicate with … Continue reading Live from D.C. … It’s FOIAonline!
This week’s guest blogger is Gery Huelseman, Principal Technical Advisor to the Air Force’s Knowledge Ops Branch, National Air & Space Intelligence Center and key member of the OGIS-facilitated FOIA Information Technology Working Group. IT Working Group members will occasionally use the FOIA Ombudsman to share their thoughts on technology solutions. Do you need to … Continue reading OGIS Information Technology Solutions: Technology can make a difference
In August 2011, OGIS hosted a meeting of FOIA IT professionals from the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and State, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to discuss how technology can streamline the FOIA process. This single meeting spawned a group of FOIA and IT professionals who are sharing ideas, making plans and dreaming big … Continue reading OK Computer: Announcing the FOIA Information Technology (IT) Working Group