Canadian Security Intelligence Service

Overall performanceFootnote 1

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) completed 75.8% of their requests in inventory in 2014-2015. While the overall performance of CSIS appears to have decreased, it can be explained in part by the statistical changes made by TBS in how they require institutions to capture the data.Footnote 2

Workload

In 2014-2015, CSIS received 366 formal requests and 298 informal requests, for a combined total of 664 requests. In comparison, it received 903 requests in 2013-2014.Footnote 3

The majority of formal requests received in 2014-2015 were from the media (48.1%), followed by the public (38.3%).

CSIS completed 314 requests this reporting period. The completion rate was 75.8%,Footnote 4 which is below the government-wide rate of 85.1%. In 2013-2014, the completion rate for CSIS was 95.0%. Also, the 298 informal requests received in 2014-2015 were all completed within 15 days.

The number of consultations received by CSIS from other federal government institutions decreased from 317 to 234, representing a decrease of 26.2% compared to 2013-2014.

In total, CSIS processed 40,300 pages in 2014-2015. The average number of pages processed per completed request decreased from 173 in 2013-2014 to 147 in 2014-2015.

The information released by the CSIS was mostly in paper format: 115 in paper format compared to 18 in electronic format.

Table 1. Workload

Measures 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
Number of requests received 488 903 366
Annual change (%) - 85% -59.5%
Completed requests 473 916 314
Annual change (%) - 93.7% -65.7%
Number of consultations received (from other government institutions) 290 317 234
Annual change (%) - 9.3% -26.2%
Average number of pages processed per request completed 133 173 147
% of requests for which more than 1,000 pages were processed 1.9% 4.9% 3.6%

Request completion time

Timeliness

Figure 1 reveals that 66.2% of requests were completed within 30 days or less, which is a decrease of 18.0% from 2013-2014. The proportion of requests completed between 31 and 60 days increased by 2.1% from 2013-2014 and a 9.9% increase is observed in the proportion of requests completed between 61 and 120 days.

Figure 1: Request Completion Time

Figure 1: Request Completion Time

Text version

Figure 1 is a bar chart with vertical bars, representing the completion time by CSIS during each reporting period between 2012–2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Completion time 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
30 days or less 61.73% 84.28% 66.24%
31-60 days 12.68% 5.57% 7.64%
61-120 days 16.49% 4.15% 14.01%
121-180 days 6.77% 3.93% 6.05%
181-365 days 1.90% 1.97% 4.46%
More than 365 days 0.42% 0.11% 1.59%
 

Extensions

CSIS took a total of 101 extensions in 2014-2015 compared to 106 in 2013-2014. The most common reason for taking an extension was consultations (76.2%), followed by interference with operations (23.8%).

Figure 2 shows that 10.9% of the extensions taken in 2014-2015 were for 30 days or less, which is 5.2% higher than in 2013-2014. The proportion of extensions taken between 31 and 60 days in 2014-2015 was 12.9%, which is a marginal increase over the previous period. In 2014-2015, we also observed a 5.0% increase in extensions that required more than 365 days compared to the previous period where there were zero.

Figure 2: Length of Extensions

Figure 2: Length of Extensions

Text version

Figure 2 is a bar chart with vertical bars, representing the length of extensions taken by CSIS during each reporting period between 2012-2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Length of extensions 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
30 days or less 9.20% 5.66% 10.89%
31-60 days 25.29% 12.26% 12.87%
61-120 days 36.78% 50.94% 47.52%
121-180 days 22.99% 26.42% 14.85%
181-365 days 5.75% 4.72% 8.91%
More than 365 days 0.00% 0.00% 4.95%
 

Deemed refusals

In 2014-2015, there was only one request closed past the statutory deadlineFootnote 5 which was delayed between 31 and 60 days. This rate represents an "A" grade.Footnote 6 CSIS cited "other" as the reason for not meeting the statutory deadline of this request.

Disclosure

Percentage of requests for which information was disclosed

In 2014-2015, 3 completed requests were entirely disclosed while the number of partially disclosed requests was 130 in 2014-2015. This represents an increase of 13.2% in 2013-2014 in the number of partially disclosed requests (see Figure 3). Almost 25.5% of requests were "neither confirmed nor denied." This is the highest category of disclosure statistic reported for the 24 institutions.

Figure 3: Level of Disclosure

Figure 3: Level of Disclosure

Text version

Figure 3 is a bar-chart with vertical bars, representing the entirely disclosed and disclosed in part requests as proportion of total requests completed by CSIS during each reporting period between 2012-2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Disclosure 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
All disclosed 0.85% 0.11% 0.96%
Disclosed in part 24.95% 13.21% 41.40%
 

Exemptions

The average number of exemptions used per completed request completed increased from 0.87 in 2013-2014 to 2.62 in 2014-2015 (see Table 2). The most used exemptions in 2014-2015 were section 16 (Law Enforcement and Investigations) (29.2%) and section 15 (International Affairs and Defence) (26.0%), followed by section 19 (Personal Information) (12.2%).

Table 2: Exemptions

Exemptions 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
Total number of exemptions 584 796 822
Total number of completed requests 473 916 314
Average number of exemptions per completed request 1.23 0.87 2.62

Complaints at the OIC

In 2014-2015, the OIC received 27 complaintsFootnote 7 against CSIS. The majority of complaints were refusals (24 refusals and 3 administrative complaints).

There were 2 well-founded and resolved complaints, 3 not well-founded, 2 discontinued and 20 complaints were pending resolution.

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Overall performance is based on two primary indicators: % of requests completed within 30 days, % of requests that were fully disclosed.

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Footnote 2

In 2014-2015, the TBS introduced "informal requests" as a separate category for reporting. Before 2014-2015, informal requests received and completed by CSIS were included in the statistical reporting. With the new changes, the informal requests are now separated from the formal request, which makes the comparison with previous years difficult. Therefore, the following analysis should be used with precaution.

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Footnote 3

The last reporting period’s spike in requests was attributed to a large volume of informal requests for previously released ATI requests that were included in the requests treated formally.

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Footnote 4

The completion rate was calculated using the number of received requests during the reporting period as well as outstanding requests from the previous period. The completion rate differs from the one reported by CSIS due to difference in the methodology.

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Footnote 5

The indicator "Lateness of Overdue Requests" is not being measured for institutions with less than 15 late requests.

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Footnote 6

The 2007-2008 OIC report card grading system was used to estimate the grade A= 0 to 5%; B= 5 to 10%; C=10 to 15%, D= 15 to 20%, F=20% and more.

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Footnote 7

The numbers reported in this section are based on the OIC’s statistics. The information may not reflect the statistics reported by institutions due to the discrepancies in the methodology used.

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