The CIS (Customs Information System), set up in 1997 by Council Regulation (EC) No 517/97 on mutual assistance between the administrative authorities of the Member States and cooperation between the latter and the Commission to ensure the correct application of the law on customs or agricultural matters (CIS Regulation), is an IT system operated by the European Commission to prevent, detect and prosecute infringements of the Community customs and agricultural matters. The aim of the Customs Information System is to provide data to assist customs authorities in the Member States of the Union to cooperate, detect activities that breach customs and agricultural legislation, and prevent and suppress serious infringements of the relevant EU legislation. The Customs Information System consists of a central database which can be accessed by authorised authorities for uploading or querying data on terminals separate from national registers

In 2003, the Customs Files Identification Database (FIDE) was created within the CIS, but in a separate database, to enable the European Commission or the designated national authorities responsible for carrying out customs investigations to identify the person's history in the course of an investigation or inquiry into that person.

The CIS Regulation was amended by Regulation (EU) 2015/1525 of the European Parliament and of the Council. The operation and use of the Customs Information System is also governed by Council Decision 2009/917/JHA of 30 November 2009 on the use of information technology for customs purposes


What kind of data is stored into the CIS?

The CIS processes personal data of persons who are under investigation for suspected breaches of EU customs and agricultural legislations. The data stored is reviewed annually and the data that is no longer necessary for the purpose of the CIS is deleted. The data in the CIS are shared between Member States, but their transfer requires the authorisation of the Member State that entered the data.

The following personal data can be stored in CIS:

  • name, maiden name, forenames, former surnames and aliases;
  • date and place of birth;
  • nationality;
  • sex;
  • number and place and date of issue of the identity papers (passports, identity cards, driving licences);
  • address;
  • particular objective and permanent physical characteristics;
  • a warning code indicating any history of being armed or violent or of having escaped;
  • reason for inclusion of data;
  • suggested action;
  • registration number of the means of transport.

For the purposes of sighting and reporting, discreet surveillance, specific checks and operational analysis the following data can be stored as well:

- the fact that the commodity, means of transport, business or person reported has been found;

- the place, time and reason for the check;

- route and destination of the journey;

- persons accompanying the person concerned or occupants of the means of transport;

- means of transport used;

- objects carried;

- the circumstances under which the commodity, means of transport, business or person was found.


Data subject’s rights

The data processed in the CIS system is protected by strict rules and can only be processed for the prevention, detection and prosecution of breaches of customs and agricultural rules. In practice, this means that data may only be recorded on a person who is suspected of having committed an activity in breach of these rules. The quality of the data is the responsibility of the Member States and data collection can only be carried out by lawful means. The system will not store so-called special categories of data, i.e. personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions or political parties, religious or philosophical beliefs, membership of an interest group, sex life, health, disease or criminal records. Data may be kept only for the time necessary to achieve the purposes of CIS.

In accordance with EU and Hungarian data protection legislation, individuals have the right to obtain, upon request, information about the data processed in the CIS system, to request the correction or rectification of inaccurate data, to request the erasure of unlawfully processed data, to apply to a court or the data protection authority for the protection of their personal data rights and for compensation for damages resulting from the infringement of those rights.

Applications should be submitted to the National Tax and Customs Administration using one of the following contact details:


National Tax and Customs Administration of Hungary

Postal address: 1373 Budapest, Pf. 561.

Address: 1054 Budapest, Széchenyi u. 2.

Tel: +36 (1) 428-5100

Fax: +36 (1) 428-5509

email: Ez az e-mail-cím a szpemrobotok elleni védelem alatt áll. Megtekintéséhez engedélyeznie kell a JavaScript használatát.


Data Protection Officer: dr. Balaska Andrea (Ez az e-mail-cím a szpemrobotok elleni védelem alatt áll. Megtekintéséhez engedélyeznie kell a JavaScript használatát.)

The authority has the right to refuse requests but is obliged to inform the person about the fact of and the reason for denial. Should you find that the authority is not adequately responsive to your request, you then may turn to the Hungarian National Authority for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (NAIH).