NARA Creates Controlled Unclassified Information Registry

In 2010, President Obama signed Executive Order 13556, “Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI),” and designated the National Archives and Records Administration as the Executive Agent “to implement this

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order and oversee agency actions to ensure compliance with this order.”

On November 4, 2011, as required by this Executive Order, the National Archives Controlled Unclassified Information Office established a publically available registry reflecting the initial categories and subcategories of unclassified information that require dissemination or safeguarding controls consistent with and pursuant to law, regulation, and Government-wide policy. This registry, additional information and CUI training is online at

The CUI program will be implemented in phases based on compliance plans and target dates to be submitted by executive agencies and departments. When fully implemented, the CUI program will require executive departments and agencies to exclusively use these categories for controlling and marking such unclassified information. The National Archives will consult with the agencies and the Office of Management and Budget and then set implementation deadlines for CUI, to include for applying standardized CUI markings.

Currently, there are more than 100 different policies for such information across the Executive branch. This plethora of policies has created inefficiency and confusion, leading to a patchwork system that fails to adequately safeguard information requiring protection, and unnecessarily restricts information sharing by creating needless impediments.

Established in 2008, the National Archives Controlled Unclassified Information Office is responsible for overseeing and managing the implementation of the CUI framework. This office furthers the President’s goal of Open Government, while at the same time outlining standards to protect some information pursuant to and consistent with applicable law, regulations, and government-wide policies.