What is Item Unique Identification (IUID)?

The Department of Defense has mandated landmark policy that requires all assets and personal property owned by the DoD, including assets in the possession of contractors, to be marked with a unique serialized identification number in accordance with MIL STD 130. Item Unique Identification (IUID) applies equally to legacy property and newly requisitioned government furnished property (GFP) in possession of contractors (PIPC), with the goal of placing 100% of GFP and deliverables in the new IUID Registry for lifecycle management.

The IUID is a totally unique identifier containing data elements which are encoded into Data Matrix bar codes that are applied to every qualifying government item. By having each item properly marked and scanned, the DoD intends to achieve continuous reporting via their Wide Area Workflow (WAWF) system and their IUID Registry.

Although bar code has been around for forty years, only recently have databases been available with enough storage and query capacity to handle the government’s volume. With this increased capacity the efficiencies provided by bar code and RFID technologies have been able to further evolve. The DoD is the user that is driving this sweeping change.

This new wave of 2D data matrix bar code, and now RFID, will have immense ripple effects throughout the economy. Those who are charged with implementing IUID are truly participants in an economic paradigm shift.


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