Table of Contents:

NCIC Classification System

The acronym NCIC stands for National Crime Information Center, which is a computerized system based in Washington, DC. This system is a computer database of wanted persons. The classification process used with this method is much easier to understand than is the Henry system as there are fewer rules to follow. However, the system is based on the Henry system. The system uses twenty characters on a line. This means each finger will be represented by two characters. The characters are representative of patterns and subgroup symbols. There are four categories to this system that are considered for inclusion. The groups are Arches, Whorls, Loops, and Others.

Pattern

Character

A. Arches

1. Plain

AA

2. Tented

TT

B. Whorls—A ridge trace value must also be included in the characters.

I = Inner M = Meet 0 = Outer

1. Plain

PI, PM, PO

2. Central Pocket Loop Whorl

Cl, CM, CO

3. Double Loop Whorl

DI, DM, DO

4. Accidental

XI, XM, XO

C. Loops—Must have two digits. If the number is lower than 10, a 0 must be placed in front of the number.

1. Ulnar loop

Actual ridge count: 1-9 = 01 - 09

2. Radial loop

Actual ridge count + 50

D. Other

1. Missing/Amputated

XX

2. Scarred

SR

Example:

19 I 12 14 W U CP U U 12 M M R A W DL T

PI09CI121462AAPMDMTT

IAFIS

Recent changes in the designations of fingerprints by the FBI within the NCIC system, as a result of new Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS) designations, are based on fingerprint patterns. The new NCIC classification system will eventually replace the Henry Classification, as well as the old NCIC code system. The new IAFIS NCIC system will still require two characters per finger or a total of twenty characters on a line.

Both the old and the new codes are indicated below for clarity of information.

Old: NCIC

New: IAFIS

Plain arch

AA

AU

Tented arch

TT

AU

Ulnar loop (right hand)

Actual Ridge Count

RS (right slant)

Ulnar loop (left hand)

Actual Ridge Count

LS (left slant)

(continued)

Old: NCIC

New: IAFIS

Radial loop (right hand)

Actual Ridge Count + 50

LS (left slant)

Radial loop (left hand)

Actual Ridge Count + 50

RS (right slant)

Plain whorl (inner trace value)

PI

WU

Plain whorl (meet trace value)

PM

WU

Plain whorl (outer trace value)

PO

WU

Central pocket loop (inner trace value)

Cl

WU

Central pocket loop (meet trace value)

CM

WU

Central pocket loop (outer trace value)

CO

WU

Double loop whorl (inner trace value)

DI

WU

Double loop whorl (meet trace value)

DM

WU

Double loop whorl (outer trace value)

DO

WU

Accidental whorl (inner trace value)

XI

WU

Accidental whorl (meet trace value)

XM

WU

Accidental whorl (outer trace value)

XO

WU

Scarred

SR

SR

Amputated

XX

XX

Where a print or pattern cannot be classified

UC

UC

Where a print is unattainable

UP

UP

To further clarify the application of the new IAFIS designation on the NCIC inquiry, the following example shows the fingerprint class (old) with the pattern class (new).

Fingerprint Class (NCIC)

Pattern Class (IAFIS)

PO CO PM 15 11 PO DO 12 14 08

WU WU WU RS RS WU WU LS LS LS

 
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