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16 September 2012

FBI Has No Files on Cypherpunks

FBI letter and attachment:

Federal Bureau of Investigation
September 10, 2012 (Received Septembe 14, 2012)

FOIPA Request No. 1198150-00

"Based the information you provided we conducted a search of the Central Records System. We were unable to identify main file records responsive to the FOIA."

Now with one record, our emailed FOIA request:

August 31, 2012

Federal Bureau of Investigation
Attn: FOI/PA Request
Record/Information Dissemination Section
170 Marcel Drive
Winchester, VA 22602-4843

Dear FBI FOIA Office,

Under provisions of the FOIA I request any and all FBI records on the group "Cypherpunks" affiliated with the online Cypherpunk Mail List established in 1992 and continuing to the present.

A description of the Cypherpunks group and some of its members, including me, is available on Wikipedia:

This material will be published on the public education website of which I am the administrator.

I agree to pay for costs associated with this request as provided by the FOIA.

Thank you very much.


John Young

The arcanity of FOIA requests is that if not precise the responses will be this generic unresponsive FBI response. A cypherpunks may have a separate file in a personal name, anonym, nickname or association with another organization, or several, which would not be provided in response to a "cypherpunks" request. John Young, for example, has been visited twice by the FBI, and telephoned twice more, but no FBI records have been found in response to several FOIA requests to various components of the FBI, each of which has a separate file system. These restricted systems are usually not linked to the "Central Records System main file records" often cited in FOIA answers to head off further inquiry and to require expensive, slow, law suits for access.