CEN/TS 15844-1:2010

Postal services - ID-tagging of letter mail items - Part 1: ID-tag structure, message and binary

Publication date:   Aug 17, 2011

General information

90.93 Standard confirmed   Jun 5, 2020


CEN/TC 331 Postal services

Technical Specification

03.240   Postal services



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This Technical Specification ) defines the information content, structure and possible printed representations of the S18 ID-tag ). This is an identifier for individual mail items which:
 is globally unique;
 can be applied to any item which is not already ID-tagged by any postal administration (or other issuer) which previously processed the item;
NOTE 1 The S18 ID-tag provides a standard means of ID-tagging which can be applied on a world-wide basis, allowing inter-administration mail items to be encoded without risk of disruption of the automated system of the delivery post. It may be applied to any size of item.
 can be read, with a high degree of reliability, by any postal handling organisation possessing appropriate equipment.
NOTE 2 ID-tags are encoded on items using a bar code symbology. As with any other form of bar code, poor quality printing, ink smudging, damage to the item, etc., can result in read errors. The S18 ID-tag encoding specifications incorporate an error protection mechanism to allow detection and correction of a large proportion of such errors.
The S18 ID-tag defined in this Technical Specification may be placed on items so that, in subsequent processing, individual items can be recognised and associated with computer-based information relating to the item concerned.
NOTE 3 Items need not be ID-tagged if this is not required for processing purposes, though it is anticipated that the use made of ID-tagging will increase. Examples of ID-tag applications are given in Clause 7.
Whilst being generally applicable to domestic mail, the specification has been designed to allow the encoding of cross-border mail and to support its application in the automated processing of such mail.
NOTE 4 UPU regulations prevent the encoding of information on the bottom 15 mm strip on the front of international letter mail. (...)

Life cycle


CEN/TS 15844-1:2010
90.93 Standard confirmed
Jun 5, 2020