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1031. What is a UID?  And why does OFAC sometimes publish lists of UIDs in its Recent Actions notices?


Throughout OFAC’s sanctions list data products, such as the XML file, each entry is assigned a unique identification number (UID) as a means to help make sorting and filtering through information easier.  

In OFAC’s files, a UID is a numeric string that is associated with a single entry within a given system. OFAC's sanctions list data products are designed to be integrated into a relational database. As such, UIDs (which are typically considered “primary” or “foreign” keys) are assigned to all primary entries on the sanctions list(s) and are used to link the primary entry to its addresses, aliases, and other identifiers.

Occasionally, OFAC may only provide a list of UIDs in a Recent Actions notice when a clerical update is made to the sanctions list(s).  The purpose of such is to underscore the fact that these types of actions are solely administrative and that there have been no new entries added to OFAC's list(s).

For more information regarding the data specification and formatting of OFAC's files or on the use of UIDs within OFAC's files, please visit the following links: 

Date Released
April 29, 2022