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DUNS Number FAQ
dunn and bradstreet
D-U-N-S Numbers FAQs
How can someone request a DUNS number for a Chinese drug establishment?
D&B has provided the following information for requesting DUNS Numbers for Chinese drug establishments.
"Any company that is located and registered in China that needs to apply for a
DUNS Number can contact our Huaxia D&B China customer service center (see below). When applying for a self-requested DUNS Number, the company representative should inform the customer service associate that the request is for compliance with the U.S. Government. The company has the option of requesting a free DUNS Number, which may take up to 30 to 40 business days to complete, or paying for a more comprehensive business profile that includes an expedited completion time.
Huaxia D&B China D-U-N-S Registered service center
+86 21 2321-3836 or 400-820-2669"
"DUNS Number requests made by a firm to obtain information on their business partners' (i.e. vendors, importers, U.S. agents) is processed through the Huaxia D&B Registered program (i.e. the e-leaflet that was attached to your original email). As mentioned, there is a fee associated with these requests and the program offers two levels of service 1) D&B Registered Basic (800 RMB/year) and 2) D&B Registered Comprehensive (1,800 RMB/year). If anyone would like more information on this service, they may go to
DUNS Number Application Process_China.pdf
How does D&B ensure that an unqualified person does not change organization or contact information associated with a DUNS Number?
D&B agents are trained to pre-qualify the requestor by asking (if by phone) or reviewing submitter information (if by the Government Contractor/Grantee webform process) to ensure they are corresponding with someone that identifies themselves as an owner, officer or manager of the entity. Agents will deny a webform-based request if the requestor is unauthorized (i.e. receptionist, assistant, etc.) Additionally, if updates are provide to D&B, D&B will capture the company representative's full name, title, telephone number, and/or email address.
How does D&B ensure that DUNS records are up-to-date and contain appropriate, relevant information?
D&B maintains the world’s largest business information database, featuring more than 130 million records from 192 countries. These records range from large, publicly traded companies to small, privately held businesses and sole proprietorships, as well both governmental and non-governmental institutions. We maintain data on each company listing, ranging from basic identification (e.g. legal business name, tradestyle name, physical address, mailing address and phone number) to more value-added intelligence (e.g. corporate linkage, NAICS/SIC codes, employee size (on both an individual location and company-wide basis), and executive names and titles).
D&B’s global database is also the world’s most up-to-date, bolstered by a $250 million annual investment in data collection and maintenance. This expenditure enables us to incorporate more than 1.5 million daily updates to our business information. In addition to D&B-initiated data collection, authorized representatives of companies (see #1 above) may contact D&B at any time to make a change to information in their DUNS record.
How does D&B ensure that its customers use D&B provided data for legitimate business purposes?
Each D&B-customer relationship is governed by a Master Services Agreement or Licensing Terms that specify restrictions on the use of D&B data. Where we have reasonable cause to suspect our data is being used outside of the agreed upon licensing agreement, D&B reserves the right to address it as we see appropriate.
Can D&B provide an authorized representative for a company with a list of all DUNS Numbers and/or profiles for all divisions within that company? In other words, does D&B associate divisions with their parent corporations and provide a DUNS hierarchy upon request?
One of the five drivers of D&B’s patented DUNSRight process is corporate linkage. D&B maintains the parent/headquarters, domestic ultimate, and global ultimate DUNS numbers for entities that are a part of a corporate family tree. Definitions are as follows:
i. Parent/Headquarters — A parent is a corporation that owns more than 50 % of another corporation’s capital stock. The parent company can also be a subsidiary of another corporation. If the parent also has branches, then it is a headquarters as well as being a parent company.
ii. Domestic Ultimate — The Domestic Ultimate is an entity within the family tree that is the highest-ranking member within a specific country. There can be several domestic ultimates within a given country for one corporate family.
iii. Global Ultimate — The Global Ultimate is the top most responsible entity within the global family tree. The Global Ultimate may have branches and/or subsidiaries reporting directly or indirectly to it.
b. D&B has dedicated linkage specialists for the Top 5,000 family trees; many of the large pharmaceutical companies are on this list. Although D&B maintains a list of the officers of a company, the requesting person need not be one of the officers. As long as the requestor is a knowledgeable person from the company, and is willing to provide their full name, title, telephone number and/or e-mail address, D&B will provide the corporate family tree information.
What happens if there are multiple DUNS numbers for a single location? How do sponsors determine which number is appropriate to use?
DUNS Number assignment is based upon site specific information for each distinct physical location of an entity (such as branches, divisions, and headquarters). In some cases, unique and separate entities may be operating out of the same location (i.e. the same physical address). An example of this could be at a doctors office or law firm where each professional may have his/her own business entity that would correspond to their own unique and separate DUNS Number. Another example of this could occur with a large, multi-national organization that may have several different business operating units located in the same primary location. For example, the Johnson & Johnson headquarter office located at 1 Johnson & Johnson Plaza, New Brunswick, NJ, 08933 has several different operating units/divisions (each with their own DUNS Number) located at the headquarter location (Johnson & Johnson, Johnson & Johnson International, Johnson & Johnson Services Inc, Depuy Inc, etc). In both circumstances, you should review the entity's profile information (i.e. legal business name, address, location type (HQ, branch or single location) to assist with identifying the proper DUNS Number.
How should foreign establishments acquire DUNS#s?
Please refer to the "Getting a D&B D-U-N-S Number Guide for FDA, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research D-U-N-S Number Pilot Participants" document. This document provides guidance on how international locations can obtain a DUNS Number.
How does D&B verify the information included in the database? Concern raised over accuracy of existing information. Are there multiple sources providing information that may lead to inaccuracy?
D&B employs a system of over 2,000 quality edits and validations before entering any information into our global business database. As part of this effort, D&B uses global cleansing software to standardize marketable records to avoid duplication and errors, along with Delivery Sequence File (DSF), Locatable Address Conversion System (LACS) and National Change of Address (NCOA) processing to maximize the currency of our U.S. company data. D&B also conducts manual “reasonability” reviews of third-party data and performs payment “re-checks” on questionable transactions. D&B’s data quality procedures are unmatched within the business information industry. Additionally, authorized representatives of companies (please see response to question #1 above) may contact D&B at any time to make a change to information in their DUNS record.
Who actually requests (or can request) the DUNS number?
The assignment of a new DUNS Number to a entity new to the D&B database can be initiated by D&B or the owner/operator of the entity. If the entity does not already have a DUNS Number, the entity can initiate the process of requesting a DUNS Number. As outlined in the response to question #1, an owner, officer or manager of the entity can initiate the request for a new DUNS Number.
Can D&B create a DUNS number without express permission by an organization?
How quickly can changes be made to addresses or other information contained in the record?
Upon verification/validation, D&B maintained data on an entity profile can updated within 24 hours.
How would we find out who is responsible for maintaining our DUNS information? Can D&B provide us with the contact person within our organization?
D&B deploys an extensive combination of automated and manual processes to collection, validate and update entity profile information (please see responds to questions # 2 and # 7 for additional details). Additionally, D&B utilizes a dedicated D&B Linkage Specialist Team to focus on the top 5,000 corporate family trees. If your company is part of the top 5000 family tree list, then we can refer you to the D&B linkage specialist to obtain more information about the establishment DUNS Number(s).
Multiple addresses for a single site, each with a single DUNS number - how might I determine which is the appropriate DUNS to use?
The requester should review the information in the D&B file on the various legal entities operating at the same address and select from among the list of candidates. If the name of the entity cannot be located in the D&B file, the owner/principal should contact D&B and initiate a request to create a new D&B record.
Listings with named CEOs that aren't actually CEOs (instead they are contact people)?
D&B uses standard titles to denote positions of key contacts at the entity. In some cases, the title "CEO" may merely suggest the most senior-ranking individual for an entity at a specific site location.
If the requestor of DUNS numbers is trained to qualify handling DUNS #s, who is responsible for doing this?
FDA is responsible for implementation of the DUNS Number to its regulated community. D&B will assist FDA in this effort as requested.
How exact do the addresses need to be? DUNS numbers are dependent on financial information from companies, but establishment information may not always coincide.
The address of the entity should match the D&B profile information. In the event that the entity address and the D&B maintained data on the entity are inconsistent, then an updated should be made to the D&B maintained profile to ensure the proper address is reflected in the D&B database. Additionally, DUNS Number assignment is based on the identification and verification of unique and separate operating entities, and does not require the collection of financial information (although, financial information is a requested data attribute that D&B analysts attempt to capture and validate).
Answers provided in a Face-to-Face meeting with representatives from Dunn and Bradstreet.
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