Sun. Mar 3rd, 2024

Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) refers to sensitive information that requires safeguarding or dissemination controls pursuant to laws, regulations, and government-wide policies. 

The CUI program is a government-wide initiative to standardize the way sensitive but unclassified information is handled across the executive branch. This program specifies the categories of information and the safeguarding or dissemination controls that protect it.

What is the Meaning of CUI?

CUI is information that the government creates or possesses, that a federal agency or entity receives, and that is shared with or submitted to the government. 

It includes federal information and information systems and is not classified under Executive Order 13526, Classified National Security Information. The purpose of the CUI program is to ensure that sensitive information is managed appropriately and protected from unauthorized access.

Examples of CUI:

  • Information related to national security, such as troop movements, weapons systems, and intelligence operations.
  • Information related to the Atomic Energy Act, such as nuclear power plant designs and nuclear materials.
  • Information that is deemed sensitive by federal agencies, such as financial data, trade secrets, and law enforcement records.

This encompasses a wide range of data and documents that are not classified but are still critical to national security and other government functions.

For example, a spreadsheet containing the names and contact information of all federal employees would be considered CUI, even though it is not classified. This is because the information in the spreadsheet could be used by a malicious actor to target federal employees for espionage or cyberattacks.

It is important to note that the definition of CUI is constantly evolving. As new technologies emerge and new threats arise, the government must adapt its definition of CUI to ensure that it is comprehensive and protects the nation’s critical information.

Which is Not an Example of CUI?

Which of the following is not an example of cui? Information that is classified under Executive Order 13526, Classified National Security Information, is not considered CUI. Additionally, information that does not meet the criteria for sensitive unclassified information as defined by the CUI program would not fall under this category.

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What is the DOD definition of CUI?

The Department of Defense (DOD) maintains a CUI program and has its own CUI registry, which lists the specific types of information that are considered CUI within the DOD context. This ensures uniformity in the identification and handling of CUI within the agency.

What is the Difference Between CUI and Unclassified Information?

The difference lies in the fact that CUI requires safeguarding or dissemination controls, as specified by the CUI program, while unclassified information does not have these specific requirements. Unclassified information may still be sensitive, but it does not fall under the purview of the CUI program.

How Many Types of CUI are There?

There are currently three types of CUI:

  • National security CUI (NSCUI): This type of CUI includes information that is related to national security, such as information about weapons of mass destruction, intelligence activities, and cybersecurity threats.
  • Atomic energy CUI (AECUI): This type of CUI includes information that is related to the atomic energy sector, such as information about nuclear power plants, nuclear weapons, and nuclear materials.
  • Other CUI (OCUI): This type of CUI includes information that is not related to national security or the atomic energy sector, but that is still considered sensitive and needs to be protected. This type of CUI can include information about financial transactions, medical records, and trade secrets.

The CUI program is designed to ensure that all CUI is appropriately managed and protected. The program includes a set of security requirements that apply to all CUI, as well as a set of specific security requirements that apply to each type of CUI. 

The CUI program also includes a process for classifying information as CUI and a process for declassifying information that is no longer considered CUI.


In conclusion, the Controlled Unclassified Information program is a unified effort across federal agencies to manage and protect sensitive unclassified information. By using safeguarding or dissemination controls, the government aims to maintain the integrity and security of critical but unclassified data and documents.

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