Recently there has been a bit of buzz about how the “Intelligence Community” secretly revised the form that the whistle blower used to report about the diplomatic conversation that he hadn’t heard first hand. Whoever made the change mad a mistake. They didn’t understand controlled documents.
Controlled documents are those documents where even a small change can have a big impact across an organization. For the most part, that is typically engineering documents, but it can also be things like forms where changes can have an impact, or legal documents where altering them can create legal issues. Typically a controlled document used to have a master drawing or document in a file so that it could be referred to. There is also a procedure for revising that document. Nowadays, rather than a grandmother type in a file room, reproducing and handing you your documents, you load them from the document control software on the computer. The grandmothers are still there. A controlled document will have a unique identifier, usually a number, and a revision identifier on each sheet of the document. There were obvious discrepancies in the whistleblower form.
Here is a link to a typical story about the issue, which links to Sean Davis discovering the alteration.
look at the bottom of the previous page in both examples. The legitimate page reads IC IG ICWSP Form 401 Rev 24MAY18
That is the document control identifier in the document control system. A controlled document cannot be altered outside the revision process. A single individual cannot make changes to this document. In this case, the revision would probably have to be signed off by Internal Communications(the IC in the identifier), The Inspector General’s office(the IG) and legal. Then the revision would be assigned to somebody in document control who does form revisions and then sent back for review and checking. In the end there are two sheets with names on them signing off on the change. The sheets may be electronic, but they are there.
The form the whistle blower used has a different footer. It reads:
ICIG CDP-ACPWA Disclosure form Rev August 2019
IC and IG are tied together, I don’t know what CPD is(copied? CPD seems to stand for Continuing Professional Development in the CIA. This may have been an unofficial form for a class used as an example) and no form # and an entire month given as the revision date. I doubt that this form came from document control. It is an altered document. In any case, if the whistle blower used this, he should be used for using a form outside document control and for potentially altering a legal document. In any case, the altered form has significant changes that are probably not legitimate and demonstrate intent before the fact.