(a)General requirement. Each air carrier, foreign and domestic, operating a passenger flight in foreign air transportation to or from the United States, including flights to the United States where the passengers have already been pre-inspected or pre-cleared at the foreign location for admission to the U.S., must, upon request, provide Customs with electronic access to certain Passenger Name Record (PNR) information, as defined and described in paragraph (b) of this section. In order to readily provide Customs with such access to requested PNR information, each air carrier must ensure that its electronic reservation/departure control systems correctly interface with the U.S. Customs Data Center, Customs Headquarters, as prescribed in paragraph (c)(1) of this section.
(b)PNR information defined; PNR information that Customs may request—
(1)PNR information defined. Passenger Name Record (PNR) information refers to reservation information contained in an air carrier's electronic reservation system and/or departure control system that sets forth the identity and travel plans of each passenger or group of passengers included under the same reservation record with respect to any flight covered by paragraph (a) of this section.
(2)PNR data that Customs may request. The air carrier, upon request, must provide Customs with electronic access to any and all PNR data elements relating to the identity and travel plans of a passenger concerning any flight under paragraph (a) of this section, to the extent that the carrier in fact possesses the requested data elements in its reservation system and/or departure control system. There is no requirement that the carrier collect any PNR information under this paragraph, that the carrier does not otherwise collect on its own and maintain in its electronic reservation/departure control systems.
(c)Required carrier system interface with Customs Data Center to facilitate Customs retrieval of requested PNR data—
(1)Carrier requirements for interface with Customs. Within the time specified in paragraph (c)(2) of this section, each air carrier must fully and effectively interface its electronic reservation/departure control systems with the U.S. Customs Data Center, Customs Headquarters, in order to facilitate Customs ability to retrieve needed Passenger Name Record data from these electronic systems. To effect this interface between the air carrier's electronic reservation/departure control systems and the Customs Data Center, the carrier must:
(i) Provide Customs with an electronic connection to its reservation system and/or departure control system. (This connection can be provided directly to the Customs Data Center, Customs Headquarters, or through a third party vendor that has such a connection to Customs.);
(ii) Provide Customs with the necessary airline reservation/departure control systems' commands that will enable Customs to:
(A) Connect to the carrier's reservation/departure control systems;
(B) Obtain the carrier's schedules of flights;
(C) Obtain the carrier's passenger flight lists; and
(D) Obtain data for all passengers listed for a specific flight; and
(iii) Provide technical assistance to Customs as required for the continued full and effective interface of the carrier's electronic reservation/departure control systems with the Customs Data Center, in order to ensure the proper response from the carrier's systems to requests for data that are made by Customs.
(2)Time within which carrier must interface with Customs Data Center to facilitate Customs access to requested PNR data. Any air carrier which has not taken steps to fully and effectively interface its electronic reservation/departure control systems with the Customs Data Center must do so, as prescribed in paragraphs (c)(1)(i)-(c)(1)(iii) of this section, within 30 days from the date that Customs contacts the carrier and requests that the carrier effect such an interface. After being contacted by Customs, if an air carrier determines it needs more than 30 days to properly interface its automated database with the Customs Data Center, it may apply in writing to the Assistant Commissioner, Office of Field Operations (OFO) for an extension. Following receipt of the application, the Assistant Commissioner, OFO, may, in writing, allow the carrier an extension of this period for good cause shown. The Assistant Commissioner's decision as to whether and/or to what extent to grant such an extension is within the sole discretion of the Assistant Commissioner and is final.
(d)Sharing of PNR information with other Federal agencies. Passenger Name Record information as described in paragraph (b)(2) of this section that is made available to Customs electronically may, upon request, be shared with other Federal agencies for the purpose of protecting national security (49 U.S.C. 44909(c)(5)). Customs may also share such data as otherwise authorized by law.