- The revised BIC standard
The revised BIC standard
A revised edition of the BIC standard (ISO 9362) was approved by the International Standards Authority (ISO) in January 2014, the implementation of which requires changes by SWIFT (acting as Registration Authority) and its users. The implementation of the revised standard includes a transition period that started in January 2015 right up until the November 2018 end date.
The structure of the BIC remains unchanged; the BIC is still an 8 character code with 3 optional characters for the addition of a branch identifier.
Although, the elements within the code are redefined.
The revised edition of the standard removes references to the SWIFT network and introduces the concept of Business Party to identify the organization and the definition of a BIC data record with specific reference data attributes.
The most significant change resulting from this segregation is that after November 2018, the connection of an organization to a SWIFT network service will no longer require the change of its BIC. This is not the case today, because a ‘1’ in position 8 of a BIC implies that the organization is not connected to SWIFTNet FIN (previously known as “BIC1”), and any other character in this position implies the organization is connected. Hence, today and until November 2018, when an organization connects to - or disconnects from - SWIFTNet FIN, its BIC is erased and replaced by a different BIC. This will no longer be the case after November 2018.
As Registration Authority, SWIFT has started implementing the revised edition of the standard and new BIC registration procedures that were deployed in January 2015 with a transition period until November 2018. SWIFT, as service provider, has introduced enhanced directory services to help the community in support of the revised standard.
For more information on the revision of the BIC standard, read the BIC implementation white paper.