32 CFR 291.3 - Definitions.
(a) FOIA Request. A written request for DNA records made by any person, including a member of the public (U.S. or foreign citizen), an organization, or a business, but not including a Federal agency or a fugitive from the law that either explicitly or implicitly invokes the FOIA (5 U.S.C. 552), 32 CFR part 285, 286, or this part.
(b) Agency record.
(1) The products of data compilation, such as all books, papers, maps, and photographs, machine readable materials or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by an agency of the United States Government under Federal law in connection with the transaction of public business and in DNA's possession and control at the time the FOIA request is made.
(2) The following are not included within the definition of the word record:
(i) Objects or articles, such as structures, furniture, vehicles and equipment, whatever their historical value, or value as evidence.
(ii) Administrative tools by which records are created, stored, and retrieved, if not created or used as sources of information about organizations, policies, functions, decisions, or procedures of a DNA organization. Normally, computer software, including source code, object code, and listings of source and object codes, regardless of medium are not agency records. (This does not include the underlying data which is processed and produced by such software and which may in some instances be stored with the software.) Exceptions to this position are outlined in paragraph (b)(3) of this section.
(iii) Anything that is not a tangible or documentary record, such as an individual's memory or oral communication.
(iv) Personal records of an individual not subject to agency creation or retention requirements, created and maintained primarily for the convenience of an agency employee, and not distributed to other agency employees for their official use.
(v) Information stored within a computer for which there is no existing computer program for retrieval of the requested information.
(3) In some instances, computer software may have to be treated as an agency record and processed under the FOIA. These situations are rare, and shall be treated on a case-by-case basis. Examples of when computer software may have to be treated as an agency record are:
(i) When the data is embedded within the software and cannot be extracted without the software. In this situation, both the data and the software must be reviewed for release or denial under the FOIA.
(ii) Where the software itself reveals information about organizations, policies, functions, decisions, or procedures of a DNA office, such as computer models used to forecast budget outlays, calculate retirement system costs, or optimization models on travel costs.
(iii) Refer to § 291.8(b) exemptions 2, 4 and 5 for guidance on release determinations of computer software.
(4) If unaltered publications and processed documents, such as regulations, manuals, maps, charts, and related geophysical materials are available to the public through an established distribution system with or without charge, the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(3) normally do not apply and they need not be processed under the FOIA. Normally, documents disclosed to the public by publication in the Federal Register also require no processing under the FOIA. In such cases, PAO will direct the requester to the appropriate source, to obtain the record.
(d) Initial denial authority (IDA). The Deputy Director (DDIR), DNA, has the authority to withhold records requested under the FOIA for one or more of the nine categories (set forth § 291.8) of records exempt from mandatory disclosure.
(e) Appellate authority. The Director, DNA.
(f) Administrative appeal. A request by a member of the general public, made under the FOIA, asking the appellate authority of a DoD Component (Director, DNA) to reverse an IDA decision to withhold all or part of a requested record or to deny a request for a waiver or reduction of fees.
(g) Public interest. Public interest is official information that sheds light on an agency's performance of its statutory duties because it falls within the statutory purpose of the FOIA in informing citizens about what their government is doing. That statutory purpose, however, is not fostered by disclosure of information about private citizens that is accumulated in various governmental files that reveals little or nothing about an agency's or official's own conduct.
(h) Electronic data. Electronic data are those records and information which are created, stored, and retrievable by electronic means. This does not include computer software, which is the tool by which to create, store, or retrieve electronic data. Refer to paragraphs (b) (2) and (3) of this section for a discussion of computer software.