• ACS and TECS support or have interfaces with more than 100 U.S. government agencies and foreign countries, nearly all international transportation carriers, and thousands of international businesses and service providers.

In August 2001, Customs embarked on a Modernization Program, a 15-year initiative to modernize and integrate its information technology infrastructure to support the government’s oversight of import and export trade compliance, border enforcement, and international passenger processing. Modernization will enable Customs and all participating government agencies to collect, analyze, collaborate on, and disseminate the right international trade and traveler information to internal and outside users in advance or in real time—to the right people, at the right time, and in the right place. Furthermore, the program will enable border-related government agencies and the international trade and travel private sector to transform the way they do business by implementing new processes that support future trade growth and changing business requirements.


Today, Customs has information systems in place at the 300 U.S. ports of entry to process all inbound and outbound cargo and passengers. Although these systems are antiquated, they still provide the platform for air and sea carriers to transmit cargo and passenger manifests in advance of arrival and enable importers to file their entries electronically. Customs interfaces with virtually every entity in the international supply chain process—importers, exporters, carriers, and a multitude of intermediaries and service providers.

Currently, Customs uses multiple systems that process international trade and travel and support a multitude of agencies and commercial businesses. The following are examples:

  • ACS tracks and monitors all imports of goods entering the United States.

  • The Automated Broker Interface is the central government system for the filing of commercial declarations on imported cargo.

  • The Automated Manifest System is a multimodular international cargo inventory control and release notification system for sea, air, and rail carriers.

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