[Executive Orders]
                           Executive Order 10964

              AMENDMENT OF EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10501 ENTITLED
          "SAFEGUARDING OFFICIAL INFORMATION IN THE INTERESTS OF
                     THE DEFENSE OF THE UNITED STATES"

     By virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
statutes of the United States, and deeming such action necessary in the
best interest of the national security, it is ordered that Executive
Order No. 10501 of November 5, 1953, as amended, be, and it is hereby further
amended as follows:

     1. Section 4 is amended

     (A) By substituting for the first paragraph thereof the following:

     "SEC. 4. Declassification, Downgrading, or Upgrading. When
classified information or material no longer requires its present level of
protection in the defense interest, it shall be downgraded or declassified in 
order to preserve the effectiveness and integrity of the classification system
and to eliminate classifications of information or material which no longer
require classification protection. Heads of departments or agencies
originating classified information or material shall designate persons to
be responsible for continuing review of such classified information or
material on a document - by- document , category, project, program, or
other systematic basis, for the purpose of declassifying or downgrading
whenever national defense considerations permit, and for receiving
requests for such review from all sources. However, Restricted Data and 
material formerly designated as Restricted Data shall be handled only in
accordance with subparagraph 4(a) (1) below and section 13 of this order. The
following special rules shall be observed with respect to changes of
classification of defense information or material, including information
or material heretofore classified: "

     (B) By deleting paragraphs (a), (e), (g), (h), and (i) and inserting
in lieu thereof the following:

     "(a) Automatic Changes. In order to insure uniform procedures for
automatic changes, heads of departments and agencies having authority for
original classification of information or material, as set forth in
section 2, shall categorize such classified information or material into
the following groups:

     "(1) Group 1. Information or material originated by foreign
governments or international organizations and over which the United
States Government has no jurisdiction, information or material provided 
for by statutes such as the Atomic Energy Act, and information or material
requiring special handling, such as intelligence and cryptography. This
information and material is excluded from automatic downgrading or
deelassification.

     "(2) Group 2. Extremely sensitive information or material which the
head of the agency or his designees exempt, on an individual basis, from
automatic downgrading and declassification.

     "(3) Group 3. Information or material which warrants some degree of
classification for an indefinite period. Such information or material
shall become automatically downgraded at 12 year intervals until the lowest
classification is reached, but shall not become automatically
declassified.

     " (4) Group d. Information or material which does not qualify for,
or is not assigned to, one of the first three groups. Such information or
material shall become automatically downgraded at three-year intervals
until the lowest classification is reached, and shall be automatically
declassified twelve years after date of issuance.

     "To the fullest extent practicable, the classifying authority shall
indicate on the information or material at the time of original
classification if it can be downgraded or declassified at an earlier
date, or if it can be downgraded or declassified after a specified event, or
upon the removal of classified attachments or enclosures. The heads, or their
designees, of departments and agencies in possession of defense information or 
material classified pursuant to this order but not bearing markings for 
automatic downgrading or declassification are hereby authorized to mark
or designate for automatic downgrading or declassification such information
or material in accordance with the rules or regulations established by the
department or agency that originally classified such information or
material."

     "(e) Information or Material Transmitted by Electrical Means. The
downgrading or declassification of classified information or material
transmitted by electrical means shall be accomplished in accordance with
the procedures described above unless specifically prohibited by the
originating department or agency. Unclassified information or material
which is transmitted in encrypted form shall be safeguarded and handled
in accordance with the regulations of the originating department or agency."

     "(g) Upgrading. If the recipient of unclassified information or
material believes that it should be classified, or if the recipient of
classified information or material believes that its classification is
not sufficiently protective, it shall be safeguarded in accordance with the
classification deemed appropriate and a request made to the reviewing
official, who may classify the information or material or upgrade the
classification after obtaining the consent of the appropriate classifying
authority. The date of this action shall constitute a new date of origin
insofar as the downgrading or declassification schedule (paragraph (a)
above) is concerned."

     " (h) Departments and Agencies Which Do Not Have Authority for
Original Classification. The provisions of this section relating to the
declassification of defense information or material shall apply to
departments or agencies which do not, under the terms of this order, have
authority for original classification of information or material, but
which have formerly classified information or material pursuant to Executive
Order No. 10290 of September 24, 1951."

     "(i) Notification of Change in Classification. In all cases in which
action is taken by the reviewing official to downgrade or declassify
earlier than called for by the automatic downgrading-declassification
stamp, the reviewing official shall promptly notify all addressees to
whom the information or material was originally transmitted. Recipients of
original information or material, upon receipt of notification of change
in classification, shall notify addressees to whom they have transmitted the
classified information or material."

     2. Section 5 is amended

     (A) By adding a new paragraph (a) thereto, as follows:

     " (a) Downgrading-Declassification Markings. At the time of
origination, all classified information or material shall be marked to
indicate the downgrading-declassification schedule to be followed in
accordance with paragraph (a) of section 4 of this order."'

     (B) By relettering the present paragraphs (a) through (i) as (b)
through (j), respectively.

     3. Section 6 is amended

     (A) By deleting from the second sentence of the first paragraph the
words "physical or mechanical."

     (B) By deleting paragraphs (a) and (b) and by inserting in lieu
thereof the following:

     "(a) Storage of Top Secret Information and Material. As a minimum,
Top Secret defense information and material shall be stored in a safe or
safe-type steel file container having a three-position dial-type
combination lock, and being of such weight, size, construction, or
installation as to minimize the possibility of unauthorized access to, or
the physical theft of, such information and material. The head of a
department or agency may approve other storage facilities which afford
equal protection such as an alarmed area, a vault, a vault-type room, or
an area under continuous surveillance.

     "(b) Storage of Secret and Confidential Information and Material. As
a minimum, Secret and Confidential defense information and material may be
stored in a manner authorized for Top Secret information and material, or
in steel file cabinets equipped with steel lockbar and a changeable
three-combination dial-type Padlock or in other storage facilities which
afford equal protection and which are authorized by the head of the
department or agency.

     "(c) Storage or Protection Equipment. Whenever new security storage
equipment is procured, it should, to the maximum extent practicable, be
of the type designated as security flling cabinets on the Federal Supply
Schedule of the General Services Administration.,"

     (C) By relettering the paragraphs (c) through (g) as (d) through
(h), respectively.

     4. Paragraphs (c) and (d) of section 8 are amended to read as
follows:

     "(c) Transmitting Secret Information and Material. Secret
information and material shall be transmitted within and between the forty-eight
contiguous States and the District of Columbia, or wholly within Alaska,
Hawaii, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a United States possession,
by one of the means established for Top Secret information and material, by
authorized courier, by United States registered mail, or by the use of
protective services provided by commercial carriers, air or surface,
under such conditions as may be prescribed by the head of the department or
agency concerned. Secret information and material may be transmitted
outside those areas by one of the means established for Top Secret
information and material, by commanders or masters of vessels of United
States registry, or by the United States registered mail through Army,
Navy, Air Force, or United States civil postal facilities; provided, that
the information or material does not at any time pass out of United
States Government control and does not pass through a foreign postal system. 
For the purposes of this section registered mail in the custody of a
transporting agency of the United States Post Office is considered within
United States Government control unless the transporting agent is foreign
controlled or operated. Secret information and material may, however, be
transmitted between United States Government or Canadian Government
installations, or both, in the forty-eight contiguous States, the
District of Columbia, Alaska, and Canada by United States and Canadian 
registered mail with registered mail receipt. Secret information and material
may also be transmitted over communications circuits in accordance with
regulations promulgated for such purpose by the Secretary of Defense.

     "(d) Transmitting Confidential Information and Material.
Confidential information and material shall be transmitted within the forty-eight
contiguous States and the District of Columbia, or wholly within Alaska,
Hawaii, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a United States possession,
by one of the means established for higher classifications, or by certified
or first-class mail. Outside those areas Confidential information and
material shall be transmitted in the same manner as authorized for higher
classifications. "

     5. Section 13 is amended to read as follows:

     "SEC. 13. 'Restricted Data,' Material Formerly Designated as
'Restricted Data,' Communications Intelligence and Cryptography. (a)
Nothing in this order shall supersede any requirements made by or under
the Atomic Energy Act of August 30, 1954, as amended. 'Restricted Data,' and
material formerly designated as 'Restricted Data,' shall be handled,
protected, classified, downgraded, and declassified in conformity with
the provisions of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, and the
regulations of the Atomic Energy Commission.

     "(b) Nothing in this order shall prohibit any special requirements
that the originating agency or other appropriate authority may impose as
to communications intelligence, cryptography, and matters related thereto."

     6. A new section 19 is added reading as follows:

     "SEC. 19. Unauthorized Disclosure by Government Personnel. The head
of each department and agency is directed to take prompt and stringent
administrative action against any officer or employee of the United
States, at any level of employment, determined to have been knowingly 
responsible for any release or disclosure of classified defense information
or material except in the manner authorized by this order, and where a 
violation of criminal statutes may be involved, to refer promptly to the 
Department of Justice any such case."

     7. Sections 19 and 20 are renumbered as sections 20 and 21,
respectively.

                                                            
JOHN F. KENNEDY

THE WHITE HOUSE,
September 20, 1961.

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