February 2, 1982

The President signed NSDD-19 on January 12, 1982, dealing with protection of classified National Security Council and Intelligence Information, directing that I establish procedures to implement its policy guidelines. This memorandum (1) supersedes NSDD-19, (2) establishes procedures for protection of National Security Council Information as herein defined, (3) directs agency heads to issue instructions in conformity with these procedures, (4) directs the Director of Central Intelligence to develop similar procedures for protection of classified intelligence information, and (5) requests the Attorney General to convene an interdepartmental group on the effectiveness of existing laws against unauthorized disclosure of classified information.

National Security Council Information

National Security Council Information means classified information contained in: (1) any document prepared by or intended primarily for use by the NSC, its interagency groups as defined in NSDD-2, or its associated committees and groups, and (2) deliberations of the NSC, its interagency groups as defined in NSDD-2, or its associated committees and groups.


Any agency or department handling NSC Information will hold the number of persons having access to such information to the absolute minimum consistent with efficient operations of the NSC system, and will strictly control document dissemination and reproduction to carry out existing law. A numbered cover sheet bearing the notation appearing below will be affixed to each copy of a document containing NSC information. The cover sheet will be attached at the time it is submitted to an Assistant Secretary or equivalent level. The NSC will provide sample cover sheets to departments and agencies who will then be responsible for further distribution and administration.


The attached document contains sensitive National Security Council Information. It is to be read and discussed only by persons authorized by law.

Your signature acknowledges you are such a person and you promise you will show or discuss information contained in the document only with persons who are authorized by law to have access to this document.

Persons handling this document acknowledge he or she knows and understands the security law relating thereto and will cooperate fully with any lawful investigation by the United States Government into any unauthorized disclosure of classified information contained herein.


Agency and department heads will forward to the NSC implementing instructions on these procedures no later than March 15, 1982.

The DCI will also submit by that date for NSC consideration draft procedures for protection of sensitive intelligence information within its control. Such procedures will be cleared within the Intelligence Community and dissenting views will be noted.

The Attorney General is requested to convene by March 1, 1982, an interagency group to report to the President on the effectiveness of existing statutes and Executive Orders prohibiting unauthorized disclosure of classified information.

For The President:

William P. Clark