FATCA: IDES testing opportunity

FATCA: IDES testing opportunity

The IRS today announced that the FATCA International Data Exchange Service (IDES) will be open for testing from Monday, April 20 at 12:00 PM EDT to Friday, April 24 at 12:00 PM EDT.

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The IDES testing will be open to all financial institutions and tax administrations that have completed IDES enrollment by Thursday, April 16, 2015, at 5:00 PM EDT.

To complete the IDES enrollment process, a user will need:

  • An IRS-issued GIIN or HCTA entity ID
  • A username
  • A valid digital certificate


Read the FATCA IDES web page for a list of IRS recommended certificates authorities.

Enrolled users will receive an email with a link to the IDES test web application on Monday April 20, 2015.


The IRS cautioned (1) the test files must be submitted to the test link and must contain only test data and (2) test data must only be submitted to the test system and never to the production system.

Pre-testing actions

Before beginning testing:

  • Review the user guides, data preparation instructions and sample test packet
  • Review sample code for data preparation utilities using, Net, Java and OpenSSL on GitHub
  • Configure alert and notification preferences on the IDES enrollment site
  • Configure the e-mail system to accept e-mails from the idesgateway.com domain
  • Review IDES data preparation user tips

Guidelines for data packets and transmissions

  • Follow the guidelines for recommended file names. File names are case sensitive and any variation in name, extension, characters or format may cause a transmission failure. Additional details can be found in the IDES User Guide (Rev 4-2015).
  • Use test data only. The test files are not to contain any production data or personally identifiable information, such as the taxpayer number, account number, or social security number.

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