Washington, D.C. 20530


Mr. Charles R. Smith
7707 Whirlaway Drive
Midlothian, VA 23112

Dear Mr. Smith:

While processing your April 5, 1997 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for certain documents regarding encryption, the Department of Commerce (DOC) identified on Civil Division document pertaining to your request. DOC referred the document to this office for review and a direct response to you with regard to its disclosure status under the Act. Your request was received in this office on June 10, 1997.

The referred document contains Civil Division's comments on a proposed NIST memorandum on cryptography.

I determined that this document must be withheld in its entirety on the basis of fifth exemption to disclosure under the FOIA, 5 U.S.C. 552 (b) (5), based upon the deliberative process privilege and the attorney work product privilege incorporated within this exemption.

If you disagree with my decision to withhold the document responsive to your request as outlined above, you may appeal by writing within 30 working days of the receipt of this letter to Co-Director, Office of Information and Privacy, Suite 570 FLAG bldg., United States Department of Justice, Washington, D.C. 20530. Both the letter appealing the decision and the envelope should be clearly marked "FOIA APPEAL". Thereafter, judicial review would be available in the U.S. District Court in the district in which you reside or have your principal place of business or in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.


James M. Kovakas
Attorney In Charge
FOI/PA Unit, Civil Division


7707 Whirlaway Drive
Midlothian, VA 23112

April 5, 1997

Commerce Department
Ms. Brenda Nolan FOIA Officer
14th and Constitution Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20230

Dear Ms. Dolan:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 USC 552, and to the regulations of the Commerce Department, CDR (citation to departmental regulations, obtainable from committee print index), I hereby request access to:

- All data provided to and/or about to the following individuals in reference with project Clipper, encryption software, legislation on encryption software, policy and contractual arrangements. Specifically, Clipper algorithm information provided, policy and/or briefing papers in connection with encryption software:

- Information on financial donations, meetings, negotiations, and policy decisions in reference to Government negotiations to purchase or obtain controling interest in RSA Inc., an encryption software company owned by James Bidzoes.

If there is a charge for locating and copying the requested material, please notify me in advance of the estimated amount.

Please reply by April 31, 1997. If the request is denied, please specify the section of the Freedom of Information Act which is being relied on as a legal basis for the denial.

Thank you.

Charles R. Smith

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