USPS

800.000

System Name:
Address Change, Mail Forwarding, and Related Services.

System Location

USPS National Customer Support Center (NCSC), Computerized Forwarding System (CFS) sites, Post Offices, USPS Processing and Distribution Centers, USPS IT Eagan Host Computing Services Center, and contractor sites.

Categories of Individuals Covered by the System

Customers requesting change of address, mail forwarding, or other related services either electronically or in writing. Customers who are victims of a natural disaster who request mail forwarding services through the Postal Service or the American Red Cross.

Categories of Records in the System

  1. Customer information: Name, title, signature, customer number, old address, new address, filing date, email address(es), telephone numbers, and other contact information.
  2. Verification and payment information: Credit and/or debit card number, type, and expiration date; or date of birth and driver’s state and license number; information for identity verification; and billing information. Customers who are victims of a natural disaster who request mail forwarding service electronically may be required to provide date of birth for verification if credit and/or debit card information is unavailable.
  3. Demographic information: designation as individual/family/business.
  4. Customer preferences: Permanent or temporary move; mail forwarding instructions; service requests and responses.
  5. Customer inquiries and comments: Description of service requests and responses.
  6. Records from service providers for identity verification.
  7. Online user information: Internet Protocol (IP) address, domain name, operating system versions, browser version, date and time of connection, and geographic location.
  8. Protective Orders.

Authority for Maintenance of the System

39 U.S.C. 401(2), 403, and 404(a)(1).

Purpose(s)

  1. To provide mail forwarding and change of address services, including local community information, and move related advertisements.
  2. To provide address correction services.
  3. To counter efforts to abuse the change-of-address process.
  4. To provide address information to the American Red Cross or other disaster relief organization about a customer who has been relocated because of disaster.
  5. To support investigations related to law enforcement for fraudulent transactions.
  6. To provide automatic updates to USPS customer systems using mail forwarding and change-of-address services.
  7. To facilitate communication between USPS customers and the Postal Service with regard to change-of-address and address correction services.

Routine Uses of Records in the System, Including Categories of Users and the Purposes of Such Uses

Standard routine uses 1. through 7., 10., and 11. apply. In addition:

  1. Disclosure upon request. The new address of a specific business or organization that has filed a permanent change-of-address order may be furnished to any individual on request. (Note: The new address of an individual or family will not be furnished pursuant to this routine use, unless authorized by one of the standard routine uses listed above or one of the specific routine uses listed below.) If a domestic violence shelter has filed a letter on official letterhead from a domestic violence coalition stating (i) that such domestic violence coalition meets the requirements of 42 U.S.C. § 10410 and (ii) that the organization filing the change of address is a domestic violence shelter, the new address shall not be released except pursuant to routine use d, e, or f pursuant to the order of a court of competent jurisdiction.
  2. Disclosure for Address Correction. Disclosure of any customer’s new permanent address may be made to a mailer, only if the mailer is in possession of the name and old address: from the National Change-of-Address Linkage (NCOALink®) file if the mailer is seeking corrected addresses for a mailing list; from the Computerized Forwarding System (CFS), from the Postal Automated Redirection System (PARS) if a mailpiece is undeliverable as addressed, or from the Locatable Address Conversion System if an address designation has been changed or assigned. Copies of change-of-address orders may not be furnished. In the event of a disaster or manmade hazard, temporary address changes may be disclosed to a mailer when, in the sole determination of the Postal Service, such disclosure serves the primary interest of the customer, for example, to enable a mailer to send medicines directly to the customer’s temporary address, and only if the mailer is in possession of the customer’s name and permanent address. If a domestic violence shelter has filed a letter on official letterhead from a domestic violence coalition stating (i) that such domestic violence coalition meets the requirements of 42 U.S.C. § 10410 and (ii) that the organization filing the change of address is a domestic violence shelter, the new address shall not be released except pursuant to routine use d, e, or f pursuant to the order of a court of competent jurisdiction.
  3. Disclosure for Voter Registration. Any customer’s permanent change of address may be disclosed to a duly formed election board or registration commission using permanent voter registration. Copies of change of address orders may be furnished.
  4. Disclosure to Government Agency. Any customer’s permanent or temporary change of address information may be disclosed to a federal, state, or local government agency upon prior written certification that the information is required for the performance of its duties. A copy of the change of address order may be furnished. Name and address information may be disclosed to government planning authorities, or firms under contract with those authorities, if an address designation has been changed or assigned.
  5. Disclosure to Law Enforcement Agency. Any customer’s permanent or temporary change of address information may be disclosed to a law enforcement agency, for oral requests made through the Postal Inspection Service, but only after the Postal Inspection Service has confirmed that the information is needed for a criminal investigation. A copy of the change of address order may be furnished.
  6. Disclosure for Service of Process. Any customer’s permanent or temporary change of address information may be disclosed to a person empowered by law to serve legal process, or the attorney for a party in whose behalf service will be made, or a party who is acting pro se, upon receipt of written information that meets prescribed certification requirements. Disclosure will be limited to the address of the specifically identified individual (not other family members or individuals whose names may also appear on the change of address order). A copy of the change of address order may not be furnished.
  7. Disclosure for Jury Service. Any customer’s change of address information may be disclosed to a jury commission or other court official, such as a judge or court clerk, for purpose of jury service. A copy of the change of address order may be furnished.
  8. Disclosure at Customer’s Request. If the customer elects, change of address information may be disclosed to government agencies or other entities.
  9. Disclosure to a disaster relief organization. Any customer’s permanent or temporary change of address may be disclosed to the American Red Cross or other disaster relief organizations, if that address has been impacted by disaster or manmade hazard.

All routine uses are subject to the following exception: Information concerning an individual who has filed an appropriate protective court order with the postmaster/CFS manager will not be disclosed under any routine use except pursuant to the order of a court of competent jurisdiction.

Policies and Practices for Storing, Retrieving, Accessing, Retaining, and Disposing of Records in the System

Storage

Records generated from the source document are recorded on the Forwarding Control System file server and on tapes at CFS units. Electronic change-of-address records and related service records are also stored on disk and/or magnetic tape in a secured environment. Change-of-address records are consolidated in a national change-of-address (NCOA) file at the USPS IT Eagan Host Computing Services Center. Selected extracts of NCOA are provided in the secure data format represented by the NCOALink product to a limited number of firms under contract or license agreement with USPS.

Retrievability

Records are retrieved by the following methods:

For paper records: by name, address, date, and ZIP Code.

For electronic records: by name, address, date, ZIP Code™, and customer number for electronic change of address and related service records; by name, address, and email address for customer service records.

Safeguards

Paper records, computers, and computer storage media are located in controlled-access areas under supervision of program personnel. Access to these areas is limited to authorized personnel, who must be identified with a badge.

Access to records is limited to individuals whose official duties require such access. Contractors and licensees are subject to contract controls and unannounced on-site audits and inspections.

Computers are protected by mechanical locks, card key systems, or other physical access control methods. The use of computer systems is regulated with installed security software, computer logon identifications, and operating system controls including access controls, terminal and transaction logging, and file management software.

Retention and Disposal
  1. National change-of-address and mail forwarding records are retained 4 years from the effective date.
  2. Delivery units access COA records from the Change-Of-Address Reporting System (COARS) database, which retains 2 years of information from the COA effective date. The physical change-of-address order is retained in the CFS unit for 30 days if it was scanned, or 18 months if it was manually entered into the national database.
  3. Online user information may be retained for 12 months.

Records existing on paper are destroyed by shredding. Records existing on computer storage media are destroyed according to the applicable USPS media sanitization practice.

System Manager(s) and Address

Vice President, Enterprise Analytics, United States Postal Service, 475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW, Washington, DC 20260.

Vice President, Delivery Operations, United States Postal Service, 475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Washington, DC 20260.

Vice President, Retail and Customer Service Operations, United States Postal Service, 475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Washington, DC 20260.

Notification Procedure

Customers wanting to know if information about them is maintained in this system of records should address inquiries to their local postmaster. Inquiries should contain full name, address, effective date of change order, route number (if known), and ZIP Code. Customers wanting to know if information about them is also maintained in the NCOA File should address such inquiries to: Manager, NCOA, National Customer Support Center, United States Postal Service, 6060 Primacy Parkway, Memphis, TN 38188.

Record Access Procedures

Requests for access must be made in accordance with the Notification Procedure above and USPS Privacy Act regulations regarding access to records and verification of identity under 39 CFR 266.6.

Contesting Record Procedures

See Notification Procedure and Record Access Procedures above.

Record Source Categories

Customers, personnel, contractors, service providers, and for call center operations, commercially available sources of names, addresses, and telephone numbers. For emergency change-of-addresses only, commercially available sources of names, previous addresses, and dates of birth. For alternative authentication, sources of names, previous and new addresses, dates of birth, and driver’s state and license number.