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NIST ITL - ANSI Accredited Standards Developer

The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (P.L. 104-113) encourages Federal agencies, as well as state and local governments, to achieve greater reliance on voluntary standards.

To achieve our goals, NIST ITL works with industry and other agencies to develop information technology standards through voluntary consensus standards developing organizations. NIST ITL maintains a listing of our present participation in voluntary standards activities.

NIST ITL (and its predecessor organizations) has been accredited by ANSI as a standards developer since October 5, 1984. We are accredited to develop voluntary consensus standards as a sponsor using the ANSI Canvass Method for the following scope of activities:

"Standards and guidelines for information exchange relating to automatic data processing and related systems".

On a few occasions, NIST ITL has chosen to sponsor the development of an ANSI standard via the ANSI Canvass Method because of special government requirements or applications. Presently, NIST ITL has one ANSI approved standard:

Data Format for the Interchange of Fingerprint, Facial, & Other Biometric Information - Part 1 (ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2007) 

One major use of the standard is for the Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System, more commonly known as IAFIS, by U.S. law enforcement (local, state, federal). IAFIS is a national fingerprint and criminal history system maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division.

IAFIS uses the FBI Electronic Biometric Transmission Specification, or EBTS, to define the interface between the IAFIS and other agencies' systems. Using ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2007, the EBTS specifies the file and record content, format, and data codes necessary for the exchange of biometric identification information between Federal, State and local users and the FBI.

Currently, a proposed draft of the "Data Format for the Interchange of Fingerprint, Facial, & Other Biometric Information - Part 2: XML Version" has been made available here for public review, and it is being balloted concurrently. The proposed ANSI/NIST-ITL 2-2008 represents the consensus agreements made at the NIST workshops that were held in April 2005, December 2005, September 2007, May 2008, and the comments received in response to the draft of this document and the May 2008 meeting.

If you are not a registered canvassee and would like to comment on the proposed standard as part of the public review process, submit your comments using the form available here. This provides a uniform manner of submitting and responding to comments. Send completed comment forms for the public review process to by July 14, 2008.

If you would like to become a registered canvassee, you are welcome to join the canvass body until the ballot period closes (July 14, 2008, 5pm EDT).  To join, you must fill out, sign, and return this form.  It can be faxed to 301-975-5287, or a scanned image of the form (with your signature) can be emailed to <>.  If you fax the form, please email <> to let us know a fax has been sent.


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Page Created: August 9, 2004
Last Updated: June 9, 2008