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Biometric Conformance Test Software (BioCTS)


NIST/ITL CSD Biometric Conformance Test Software for Biometric Data Interchange Formats

NEWAugust 2017:
BioCTS for ANSI/NIST-ITL Supporting Machine Readable Table Beta Version Released

Some new features include:
- Supports User Configurable XML Files
- Tests Multiple Data Format Specifications in a Single Batch
- Tests Traditional and NIEM XML Specifications in a Single Batch
NEWLevel-2 Conformance Testing


NIST/ITL CSD Biometric Conformance Test Software (BioCTS) tests implementations for conformance to various biometric data interchange format standards. BioCTS for ISO/IEC tests for conformance to selected biometric standards developed by ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 37 - Biometrics and PIV profiles. BioCTS for ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2011 and ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2011 Update: 2013 tests for conformance to selected Record Types of the ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2011 standard and the ANSI/NIST-ITL 1-2011 Update: 2013 respectively.  BioCTS AN MRT tests for conformance to ANSI/NIST-ITL standards and profiles defined by configurable XML files known as ANSI/NIST Machine Readable Tables (MRTs).

To download a specific version of BioCTS and the associated documentation, select the link below. For other conformance testing software, including test suites for BioAPI and CBEFF Patron Format A Data Structures, see the links in the page menu.


NIST/ITL Computer Security Division (CSD) supports the development of national and international biometric standards and promotes conformity assessment through:  

  • Participation in the development of biometric standards
  • Sponsorship of conformance testing methodology standard projects
  • Development of associated conformance test architectures and test suites
  • Leadership in national and international standards development bodies


Need for Conformance Testing

Conformance testing captures the technical description of a standard and measures whether an implementation faithfully implements the standard. Read more.

Software Description

BioCTS includes several features for testing implementations for conformance to biometric standards, including:

  • Batch testing: allows a large number of implementations to be tested quickly.
  • Editor: allows data to be edited, retested, and saved in order to make failing files compliant.
  • Detailed results: results feature pass/fail/warning messages, test names, and descriptions when appropriate. The editor allows the results to be displayed in a hierarchical, expandable format.

Software Disclaimer

NIST/ITL CSD BioCTS Disclaimer

Software Requirements

BioCTS runs under Microsoft® Windows® 7TM Service Pack 1 and later, using the .NET 4.0 Framework.  This includes Windows® 8.1TM and Windows® 10TM


The BioCTS work was sponsored in part by the Department of Homeland Security/Office of Biometric Identity Management (OBIM).


Send comments/errors on the tool, sample data and documentation to

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Created July 8, 2010, Updated September 5, 2017