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Notice

Privacy Act of 1974; System of Records; Statement of General Routine Uses; Notice of Establishment of Two New General Routine Uses and Republication of All General Routine Uses

Action

Notice To Establish Two New Privacy Act General Routine Uses And To Republish All General Routine Uses.

Summary

In accordance with the requirements of the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, 5 U.S.C. 552a, the Department of Transportation's Office of the Secretary of Transportation (DOT/OST) is publishing two new general routine uses for all DOT systems of records and republishing all of its general routine uses. Comment is invited on the two new routine uses. The two new routine uses are consistent with the following recommendations:

(1) A recommendation in a memorandum issued by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on May 22, 2007 (Memorandum M-07-16 “Safeguarding Against and Responding to the Breach of Personally Identifiable Information”) that all Federal agencies publish a routine use for their systems allowing for the disclosure of personally identifiable information to appropriate parties in the course of responding to a breach of data maintained in a system of records; and

(2) A recommendation by the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) within the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) that all Federal agencies publish a routine use for their systems to authorize disclosure of personally identifiable information to OGIS for Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) dispute resolution and compliance review purposes.

 

Table of Contents Back to Top

DATES: Back to Top

Effective February 14, 2011. Written comments should be submitted on or before the effective date. The proposed new general routine use will be effective February 14, 2011 unless DOT publishes an amended routine use in light of any comments received.

ADDRESSES: Back to Top

Send written comments on the two new general routine uses to Habib Azarsina, Departmental Privacy Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590 or habib.azarsina@dot.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Back to Top

Habib Azarsina, Departmental Privacy Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590 or habib.azarsina@dot.gov or (202) 366-1965.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Back to Top

The Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a) governs the means by which the United States Government collects, maintains, and uses personally identifiable information (PII) in a system of records. A “system of records” is a group of any records under the control of a Federal agency from which information about individuals is retrieved by name or other personal identifier. The Privacy Act requires each agency to publish in the Federal Register, for public notice and comment, a system of records notice (SORN) identifying and describing each system of records the agency maintains, including the purposes for which the agency uses PII in the system and the routine uses for which the agency discloses such information outside the agency. As provided in “Privacy Act Guidelines” issued by OMB on July 1, 1975 (see 40 FR 28966), once an agency has published a routine use that will apply to all of its systems of record (i.e., a general routine use) in the Federal Register for public notice and comment, the agency may thereafter incorporate that publication by reference in each system's SORN without inviting further public comment on that use. To date, DOT has published ten general routine uses (see 65 FR 19476 published April 11, 2000 and 68 FR 8647 published February 24, 2003).

Because the two new general routine uses would effect a significant change to all DOT systems of record, a report on the establishment of those uses has been sent to Congress and to OMB, in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552a(r).

The two new general routine uses are compatible with the purposes for which the information to be disclosed under the routine uses was originally collected. With respect to the first new general routine use, individuals whose personally identifiable information is in DOT systems expect their information to be secured; sharing their information with appropriate parties in the course of responding to a confirmed or suspected breach of a DOT system will help DOT protect them against potential misuse of their information by unauthorized persons. With respect to the second new general routine use, individuals whose personally identifiable information is in DOT systems expect their information to be disclosed to or withheld from FOIA requesters in compliance with FOIA; sharing their information with OGIS for the purposes stated will assist DOT in complying with FOIA.

For the reasons set forth above, the following two general routine uses are established:

11. DOT may disclose records from this system, as a routine use, to appropriate agencies, entities, and persons when (1) DOT suspects or has confirmed that the security or confidentiality of information in the system of records has been compromised; (2) DOT has determined that as a result of the suspected or confirmed compromise there is a risk of harm to economic or property interests, identity theft or fraud, or harm to the security or integrity of this system or other systems or programs (whether maintained by DOT or another agency or entity) that rely upon the compromised information; and (3) the disclosure made to such agencies, entities, and persons is reasonably necessary to assist in connection with DOT's efforts to respond to the suspected or confirmed compromise and prevent, minimize, or remedy such harm.

12. DOT may disclose records from this system, as a routine use, to the Office of Government Information Services for the purpose of (a) resolving disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal agencies and (b) reviewing agencies' policies, procedures, and compliance in order to recommend policy changes to Congress and the President.

For convenience, all twelve DOT general routine uses are republished in their entirety:

The following routine uses apply, except where otherwise noted or where obviously not appropriate, to each system of records maintained by the Department of Transportation, DOT.

1. In the event that a system of records maintained by DOT to carry out its functions indicates a violation or potential violation of law, whether civil, criminal or regulatory in nature, and whether arising by general statute or particular program pursuant thereto, the relevant records in the system of records may be referred, as a routine use, to the appropriate agency, whether Federal, State, local or foreign, charged with the responsibility of investigating or prosecuting such violation or charged with enforcing or implementing the statute, or rule, regulation, or order issued pursuant thereto.

2. A record from this system of records may be disclosed, as a routine use, to a Federal, State, or local agency maintaining civil, criminal, or other relevant enforcement information or other pertinent information, such as current licenses, if necessary to obtain information relevant to a DOT decision concerning the hiring or retention of an employee, the issuance of a security clearance, the letting of a contract, or the issuance of a license, grant or other benefit.

3. A record from this system of records may be disclosed, as a routine use, to a Federal agency, in response to its request, in connection with the hiring or retention of an employee, the issuance of a security clearance, the reporting of an investigation of an employee, the letting of a contract, or the issuance of a license, grant, or other benefit by the requesting agency, to the extent that the information is relevant and necessary to the requesting agency's decision on the matter.

4a. Routine Use for Disclosure for Use in Litigation. It shall be a routine use of the records in this system of records to disclose them to the Department of Justice or other Federal agency conducting litigation when—

(a) DOT, or any agency thereof, or

(b) Any employee of DOT or any agency thereof (including a member of the Coast Guard), in his/her official capacity, or

(c) Any employee of DOT or any agency thereof (including a member of the Coast Guard), in his/her individual capacity where the Department of Justice has agreed to represent the employee, or

(d) The United States or any agency thereof,

where DOT determines that litigation is likely to affect the United States, is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and the use of such records by the Department of Justice or other Federal agency conducting the litigation is deemed by DOT to be relevant and necessary in the litigation, provided, however, that in each case, DOT determines that disclosure of the records in the litigation is a use of the information contained in the records that is compatible with the purpose for which the records were collected.

4b. Routine Use for Agency Disclosure in Other Proceedings. It shall be a routine use of records in this system to disclose them in proceedings before any court or adjudicative or administrative body before which DOT or any agency thereof, appears, when—

(a) DOT, or any agency thereof, or

(b) Any employee of DOT or any agency thereof (including a member of the Coast Guard) in his/her official capacity, or

(c) Any employee of DOT or any agency thereof (including a member of the Coast Guard) in his/her individual capacity where DOT has agreed to represent the employee, or

(d) The United States or any agency thereof,

where DOT determines that the proceeding is likely to affect the United States, is a party to the proceeding or has an interest in such proceeding, and DOT determines that use of such records is relevant and necessary in the proceeding, provided, however, that in each case, DOT determines that disclosure of the records in the proceeding is a use of the information contained in the records that is compatible with the purpose for which the records were collected.

5. The information contained in this system of records will be disclosed to the Office of Management and Budget, OMB, in connection with the review of private relief legislation as set forth in OMB Circular No. A-19 at any stage of the legislative coordination and clearance process as set forth in that Circular.

6. Disclosure may be made to a Congressional office from the record of an individual in response to an inquiry from the Congressional office made at the request of that individual. In such cases, however, the Congressional office does not have greater rights to records than the individual. Thus, the disclosure may be withheld from delivery to the individual where the file contains investigative or actual information or other materials which are being used, or are expected to be used, to support prosecution or fines against the individual for violations of a statute, or of regulations of the Department based on statutory authority. No such limitations apply to records requested for Congressional oversight or legislative purposes; release is authorized under 49 CFR 10.35(9).

7. One or more records from a system of records may be disclosed routinely to the National Archives and Records Administration in records management inspections being conducted under the authority of 44 U.S.C. 2904 and 2906.

8. Routine Use for disclosure to the Coast Guard and to Transportation Security Administration. A record from this system of records may be disclosed as a routine use to the Coast Guard and to the Transportation Security Administration if information from this system was shared with either agency when that agency was a component of the Department of Transportation before its transfer to the Department of Homeland Security and such disclosure is necessary to accomplish a DOT, TSA or Coast Guard function related to this system of records.

9. DOT may make available to another agency or instrumentality of any government jurisdiction, including State and local governments, listings of names from any system of records in DOT for use in law enforcement activities, either civil or criminal, or to expose fraudulent claims, regardless of the stated purpose for the collection of the information in the system of records. These enforcement activities are generally referred to as matching programs because two lists of names are checked for match using automated assistance. This routine use is advisory in nature and does not offer unrestricted access to systems of records for such law enforcement and related antifraud activities. Each request will be considered on the basis of its purpose, merits, cost effectiveness and alternatives using Instructions on reporting computer matching programs to the Office of Management and Budget, OMB, Congress, and the public, published by the Director, OMB, dated September 20, 1989.

10. It shall be a routine use of the information in any DOT system of records to provide to the Attorney General of the United States, or his/her designee, information indicating that a person meets any of the disqualifications for receipt, possession, shipment, or transport of a firearm under the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act. In case of a dispute concerning the validity of the information provided by DOT to the Attorney General, or his/her designee, it shall be a routine use of the information in any DOT system of records to make any disclosures of such information to the National Background Information Check System, established by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, as may be necessary to resolve such dispute.

11. DOT may disclose records from this system, as a routine use, to appropriate agencies, entities, and persons when (1) DOT suspects or has confirmed that the security or confidentiality of information in the system of records has been compromised; (2) DOT has determined that as a result of the suspected or confirmed compromise there is a risk of harm to economic or property interests, identity theft or fraud, or harm to the security or integrity of this system or other systems or programs (whether maintained by DOT or another agency or entity) that rely upon the compromised information; and (3) the disclosure made to such agencies, entities, and persons is reasonably necessary to assist in connection with DOT's efforts to respond to the suspected or confirmed compromise and prevent, minimize, or remedy such harm.

12. DOT may disclose records from this system, as a routine use, to the Office of Government Information Services for the purpose of (a) resolving disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal agencies and (b) reviewing agencies' policies, procedures, and compliance in order to recommend policy changes to Congress and the President.

Dated: December 22, 2010.

Habib Azarsina,

Departmental Privacy Officer.

[FR Doc. 2010-32876 Filed 12-28-10; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-9X-P

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