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Classified Material Conversion

Welcome to the NSA Classified Material Conversion (CMC) web page!

The CMC is responsible for the declassification and processing of classified material in support of NSA elements, various activities of the Intelligence Community, several Government Agencies and Contractor entities that have on-going contracts with U.S. Government Agencies where Government Furnished Equipment (GFE) has been provided. This is accomplished through standard industrial conversion or destruction processes using numerous recycling and reclamation procedures in strict accordance with environmental, safety and security standards.

To properly ensure the secure collection, destruction and conversion of classified material, the following information and guidelines will help you to help us. Please keep in mind that there are two categories of unwanted classified material: paper and special burn.

  1. PAPER ITEMS: Paper IS NOT burned, but converted to pulp for recycling. Water-soluble paper is classified as paper that will break down and decompose when mixed with water. Non-soluble classified paper will be accepted as a Special Burn Item (See Special Burn Items Below). Please be sure to place ONLY water-soluble paper in your shipping package/container.
  2. SPECIAL BURN ITEMS: The following items are categorized as Special Burn and ARE NOT to be placed in the same package/container with water-soluble paper. The following items should be appropriately labeled and plainly marked as "SPECIAL BURN" on the OUTSIDE of your shipping package/container.
    1. Aluminum Products: Lithographic plates, print drums, print plates, disks, etc.
    2. Blackberry's: Power supplies (to include batteries) MUST be removed.
    3. Circuit Boards: ONLY the circuit board will be collected. Frames, COMSEC chips and power supplies (to include batteries) MUST be removed.
    4. CD ROM's: Remove ALL CD ROMs from the storage case, and separate (CD ROMs in one package/container, and storage cases in another). ONLY CLASSIFIED storage cases (containing markings and/or labels) will be accepted. If no markings and/or labels are present, cases are considered regular trash.
    5. COMSEC Chips: COMSEC chips MUST be packaged separately and labeled.
    6. Disk Packs: Disk Packs containing aluminum disks MUST be disassembled and removed from the plastic enclosure.
    7. Hard Drives: Remove any metal or plastic framing from the outside of the case prior to shipping.
    8. Miscellaneous Items: Floppy disks, videotapes, film products, non-water soluble paper, data tapes (minus the aluminum casings and backing plates), typewriter cartridges, microfiche, Mylar tape, viewgraphs, and magnetic cards. IF SHIPPING MORE THAN ONE ITEM, PLEASE PACKAGE ALL MATERIALS SEPARATELY. Please note that small items may be placed in double wrapped envelopes. Once items have been separated and properly marked, you may ship them in one box.

ALL CMC CUSTOMERS: As with any process dealing with classified materials, there are specific shipping and delivery procedures that MUST be followed. In addition, the CMC requires that specific forms (1) copy of the CMC Receipt for Destruction) and a self addressed stamped envelope MUST accompany ALL material shipments.

CONTRACTOR CUSTOMERS: Prior to the CMC accepting any material shipment, an on-going contract with a U.S. Federal Government agency in which Government Furnished Equipment (GFE) has been provided, MUST be verified through the submission of a Contractor Approval Form to the CMC Customer Service Office.

Questions regarding how to acquire CMC forms, shipping procedures, and guidelines may be found by referencing the CMC Required Procedures document. Additional material destruction questions may be directed to the CMC Customer Service Office via e-mail at or phone (301) 688-6672.