US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced a rule in 2008, called the Importer Security Filing (ISF) or more commonly referred to as 10+2, which requires cargo information to be electronically transmitted to CBP at least 24 hours before goods are loaded on an ocean vessel for shipment to the US. This rule is pursuant to section 203 of the SAFE Port Act, and requires importers to provide 10 data elements to CBP as well as the carrier to provide two additional data elements. The purpose of this regulation is to allow CBP to recognize high-risk shipments in advance of them arriving at US borders.


The challenge of CBP’s Importer Security Filing (ISF or 10+2) is the compilation of various kinds of data from the multiple parties involved in an import transaction. Integration Point ISF provides a web-based architecture and transactional processing design, which is ideal to address this challenge and facilitate a successful filing strategy for the importer.


Integration Point ISF (or 10+2) takes available electronic data from any supply chain partner, maps it to the requested data elements, and then provides the filer with a tool to fill in the blanks, if there are any. Our software then combines the required product and shipping information prior to lading of any goods being imported into the US and submits it directly to CBP. Upon submission, the importer receives status messages throughout the approval process and can quickly see when there is a problem before the shipment arrives at the US port.


Integration Point Importer Security Filing will make it possible for the importer (who is ultimately responsible for the filing) to either do it themselves or trust that a third party filer will submit the appropriate product information with the shipping information they have traditionally owned.


When did ISF take effect?

The Importer Security Filing, or ISF, rule was published on November 26, 2008, and went into effect on January 26, 2009. CBP took a phased-in approach in terms of implementation and enforcement, and during the first 12 months, importers were warned of infractions instead of being fined. Since January 26, 2010, US importers are required to comply, or face fines up to $5,000 for each violation.


What are the elements required on the Importer Security Filing (ISF)?

The following are the ten data elements that must be transmitted to CBP by the importer as part of the ISF:

  • Manufacturer’s name and address
  • Seller’s name and address
  • Consolidator’s name and address
  • Container stuffing location (Address at which goods loaded into a container)
  • Buyer’s name and address (Last named buyer)
  • Ship to name and address (Party physically receiving the goods)
  • Importer of record’s number
  • Consignee’s number
  • Country of origin
  • Harmonized tariff schedule number (to the 6th digit)

CBP also wants two additional elements to be provided by the ocean carrier at least 48 hours after departure from the last foreign port (or prior to arrival for voyages less than 48 hours in duration).

  • Vessel stow plan
  • Container status message

For anyone familiar with or learning about ISF compliance, understanding the 10 main transaction types is key. Below are the 10 transaction types and a brief description of what each means.

  • 01 Standard — Covers the vast majority of commercial shipments
  • 02 Ship to — Should be used for shipments that have not been sold to a buyer in the US and is typically used for commodities shipments (e.g., coffee beans, cocoa, etc.)
  • 03 HHG/PE — Used for all household goods and personal effects shipments, including shipments from military members, other US governmental personnel and their families returning to the US
  • 04 Government & Military — Only to be used for actual government or military shipments that are not considered personal effects.
  • 05 Diplomatic — To be used for foreign entities entitled to diplomatic immunity but not for US diplomatic personnel returning to the US
  • 06 Carnet — Covers all shipments arriving under carnet
  • 07 US Goods — Reserved for shipments containing solely US Goods Returned
  • 08 FTZ Shipments — Reserved for shipments going into a Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ)
  • 09 International Mail — Reserved for USPS mail shipments only
  • 10 OCS Shipments — Used for shipments arriving from a US outer continental shelf point or from vessels operating over a US OCS point (e.g. rigs, derrick barges, seismic vessels)


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