The Privacy Act of 1974, 5 U.S.C 552a, as amended, allows individuals to gain access to their personal records, subject to certain exemptions, and to seek amendment and/or correction of their records. Title 32 Code of Federal Regulation §310.7 governs amendment procedures for the Department of Defense.
Amendment requests to the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA) should identify each particular record in question, state the amendment or correction that is sought, and state why the record is not accurate, relevant, timely, or complete without the correction. Relevant factual documentation supporting the proposed amendment, or correction, should be submitted with the request.
Certain records maintained by the DCSA are not subject to amendment or correction under the Privacy Act. A detailed list of DCSA records exempt from Privacy Act amendment requirements can be found at 32 CFR §310.7(b).
If a request for an amendment is granted in whole, or in part, the individual will receive a description, or copy, of the amendment, or notification of the right to obtain a copy of the amended record. If the request for amendment is denied in whole, or in part, the notification of denial letter will explain: (1) the reason(s) for the denial, and (2) the procedures for filing an appeal.
Submitting an Amendment Request
Requests to amend background investigation records may be sent to the DCSA FOIA and Privacy Office for Investigations. Requests may be made using the INV100 Freedom of Information / Privacy Act Records Request for Background Investigations form or submitted in writing.
The following information must be included in any amendment request:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Place of birth
- Full social security number
- A precise identification of the record in question
- The amendment sought with an explanation as to why the record is not accurate, relevant, timely or complete without the correction
- Factual documentation supporting the requested amendment
- Mailing address and email address if you'd like your material returned electronically
- Photocopies of two different identity source documents. Examples of acceptable identity source documents are noted on the FOI/P Program Overview page.
- Handwritten requests must include an original notarized statement or an unsworn declaration in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on (date). (Handwritten Signature).
Representatives and/or guardians may submit an amendment request on behalf of the subject of the investigation. Requests must include everything mentioned above, and the following information:
- The subject must provide written authorization for the representative to request the amendment on their behalf. The authorization should include the name and mailing address of the representative.
- The authorization must clearly indicate that the DCSA FOI/P Office for Investigations is authorized to correspond with and release records to the representative.
- Photocopies of two different identity source documents from the subject of the record(s) must be provided. Examples of acceptable identity source documents are noted on the FOI/P Program Overview page.
- The subject’s authorization must include an original notarized statement or an unsworn declaration in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 1746, in the following format: I declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. Executed on (date). (Handwritten Signature).
Appealing an Amendment Denial
Those portions of the amendment request that are denied may be appealed to the DCSA. Appeals must be post marked within 60 calendar days from the date on the denial letter.
Appeals should be submitted in writing to the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency, ATTN: Office of General Counsel, 27130 Telegraph Road, Quantico, VA 22134. Clearly mark the outside of the envelope and your appeal letter: “Privacy/FOIA Appeal”. The appeal should include: (1) factual documentation supporting the requested amendment, (2) an explanation why the agency decision may have been in error, (3) a copy of the original request, (4) a copy of the amendment denial response letter, and (5) a reference to the tracking number provided in the amendment denial response letter.
The appellant will be notified within 30 working days, from the date of the appeal letter, with the appeal decision unless the period is extended for good cause.
If the appeal is denied in whole, or in part, the appellant will be informed of their right to file a Statement of Disagreement and their right for judicial review. If a Statement of Disagreement is filed, it must clearly identify each part of any record that is disputed, be concise in nature, and generally shorter than one typed page. The Statement of Disagreement will be filed or notated in the system of records and an annotation to the record itself will indicate the existence and location of the Statement of Disagreement. Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. §552a(g)(1) and 32 CFR 310.6(b), appellants may also seek judicial review for any negative determinations in the District Court of the United States in the district: (1) in which they reside; (2) in which they maintain their principal place of business; (3) where the disputed agency records are maintained; or (4) in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
If the amendment appeal results in a reversal of or modification to the initial decision, in whole or in part, the appellant will be notified in writing of this decision and the request will be reprocessed in accordance with the appeal decision.