Common Information Sharing Standards
The Common Information Sharing Standards (CISS) program provides standards, or rules, for technology implementation and information sharing processes and products for the ISE. This program was initially known as Common Terrorism Information Sharing Standards program, but over time it became clear that it is not possible to draw arbitrary boundaries around types of information. Consequently, the CISS program now factors in the need to exchange information with other relevant domains—such as the critical infrastructure, maritime, and biohazard domains—which in turn can contribute to counterterrorism investigative and response missions. The CISS program produces two types of standards (see Figure below):
- Functional Standards set forth rules, conditions, guidelines, and characteristics of data and mission products supporting ISE business processes (categorized as “government-unique standards”); and
- Technical Standards document methodologies and practices to design and implement information sharing technology capability into ISE systems in order to enable interoperability and interconnectivity (derived from voluntary consensus standards).
Functional Standards codify business processes, information exchanges, and data fields for use by all ISE participants, and include provisions to control distribution of and access to operationally sensitive or privacy-related information when stored in ISE Shared Spaces. The ISE-SAR Functional Standard (ISE-FS-200)—first issued in January 2008 and updated in May 2009—provides the best example to date of the value of the CISS Program. The ISE-SAR Functional Standard includes the business rules and formats for exchanging SARs that were agreed to both by operating organizations (frontline law enforcement) and privacy and civil liberties advocacy groups.
Learn more about the most common information standards:
A Standards-Based Approach: Identify the benefits of developing a structured, standards-driven approach to information sharing
National Information Exchange Model (NIEM): Discover how NIEM connects communities of people who share a need for access to information
Universal Core (UCORE): Find out more about this federal information sharing initiative that supports NSIS and associated agencies
NIEM-UCORE: See how the Seahawk project successfully combined NIEM and UCORE to share information