DNI Coats establishes new IC “unmasking” policy

On January 11, Director of National Intelligence Daniel R. Coats signed Intelligence Community Policy Guidance 107.1, establishing for the first time community-wide guidance for responding to requests for the identities of U.S. persons in disseminated intelligence reports, commonly referred to as “unmasking.”

On January 9, President Trump formally instructed the DNI to establish this policy.

The policy directs Intelligence Community elements—both civilian and military—to implement individual agency protections within 90 days in consultation with the Attorney General and Secretary of Defense, respectively.

Key provisions of the policy include:

  • A requirement that only IC element heads or their designees may approve requests for U.S. person identity information
  • Documentation for names or titles of individuals who will receive the information
  • A fact-based justification for each request
  • IC element General Counsel concurrence for requests that related to Presidential transition team members before those requests are approved by IC elements.

Source: ODNI