49 CFR 512.6 - How should I prepare documents when submitting a claim for confidentiality?

§ 512.6 How should I prepare documents when submitting a claim for confidentiality?

(a) Information claimed to be confidential must be clearly identified to enable the agency to distinguish between those portions of the submission claimed to constitute confidential business information and those portions for which no such claim is made.

(b) The word “CONFIDENTIAL” must appear on the top of each page containing information claimed to be confidential.

(1) If an entire page is claimed to be confidential, the submitter must indicate clearly that the entire page is claimed to be confidential.

(2) If the information for which confidentiality is being requested is contained within a page, the submitter shall enclose each item of information that is claimed to be confidential within brackets: “[ ].”

(c) Submissions in electronic format -

(1) Persons submitting information under this Part may submit the information in an electronic format. Except for early warning reporting data submitted to the agency under 49 CFR part 579, the information submitted in an electronic format shall be submitted in a physical medium such as a CD-ROM. The exterior of the medium (e.g., the disk itself) shall be permanently labeled with the submitter's name, the subject of the information and the words “CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS INFORMATION”.

(2) Confidential portions of electronic files submitted in other than their original format must be marked “Confidential Business Information” or “Entire Page Confidential Business Information” at the top of each page. If only a portion of a page is claimed to be confidential, that portion shall be designated by brackets. Files submitted in their original format that cannot be marked as described above must, to the extent practicable, identify confidential information by alternative markings using existing attributes within the file or means that are accessible through use of the file's associated program. When alternative markings are used, such as font changes or symbols, the submitter must use one method consistently for electronic files of the same type within the same submission. The method used for such markings must be described in the request for confidentiality. Files and materials that cannot be marked internally, such as video clips or executable files or files provided in a format specifically requested by the agency, shall be renamed prior to submission so the words “Confidential Bus Info” appears in the file name or, if that is not practicable, the characters “Conf Bus Info” or “Conf” appear. In all cases, a submitter shall provide an electronic copy of its request for confidential treatment on any medium containing confidential information, except where impracticable.

(3) Confidential portions of electronic files submitted in other than their original format must be marked with consecutive page numbers or sequential identifiers so that any page can be identified and located using the file name and page number. Confidential portions of electronic files submitted in their original format must, if practicable, be marked with consecutive page numbers or sequential identifiers so that any page can be identified and located using the file name and page number. Confidential portions of electronic files submitted in their original format that cannot be marked as described above must, to the extent practicable, identify the portions of the file that are claimed to be confidential through the use of existing indices or placeholders embedded within the file. If such indices or placeholders exist, the submitter's request for confidential treatment shall clearly identify them and the means for locating them within the file. If files submitted in their original format cannot be marked with page or sequence number designations and do not contain existing indices or placeholders for locating confidential information, then the portions of the files that are claimed to be confidential shall be described by other means in the request for confidential treatment. In all cases, submitters shall provide an electronic copy of their request for confidential treatment on any media containing confidential data except where impracticable.

(4) Electronic media may be submitted only in commonly available and used formats.

[ 68 FR 44228, July 28, 2003, as amended at 72 FR 59469, Oct. 19, 2007]

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