Updated March 2, 2022
Non-FAA, third-party data sources are able to capture ICAO aircraft addresses directly from ADS-B Out transmissions.
To address the privacy concerns with access to this data, the FAA has created the Privacy ICAO Address (PIA) program, which allows operators to use alternate, ICAO aircraft addresses that aren’t tied to an aircraft in the Civil Aviation Registry (CAR).
Requesting a PIA
In order to receive a PIA assignment, the requester submits the following information to the FAA:
- Acknowledgement of the FAA notification of collection and management of personally identifiable information (PII) for the management of PIA assignment and their use in the national airspace system (NAS)
- Acknowledgement of the PIA Rules of Use in the NAS
- Valid aircraft registration for the aircraft that will be assigned the PIA (Permanent ICAO aircraft address)
- Proof of authorization to use a third-party Flight ID with the identity of the provider
- Aircraft owner’s contact information: phone number, email address and business or home address
- Aircraft owner’s individual/company/organization information
- Requester’s contact information: phone number, email address and business or home address
- Public ADS-B Performance Report (PAPR) within the past 180 days that validates that the aircraft’s ADS-B emitter performance is qualified for ADS-B operations
- Aircraft operator’s justification for Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) exemption, if applicable
The FAA will verify the information provided by the requester prior to assigning the PIA and ensure that there are no open FAA enforcement actions associated with the aircraft, which would preclude the aircraft’s use of this mechanism for improved privacy until the current action is resolved.
Once the necessary information has been submitted, the requester should expect to receive a PIA assignment via email within 10 business days.
PIA Verification and Implementation
Upon receiving the assigned PIA, the requester has 30 calendar days to program their ADS-B transponder to the assigned PIA, fly in ADS-B coverage airspace, and complete the verification process via the website.
Once the FAA acknowledges that the verification process is complete and validates that the reprogrammed ADS-B transponder is emitting the correct PIA, the requester will receive a final confirmation via email.
However, if the requester does not submit a PAPR within 30 calendar days of the PIA assignment, the assigned PIA will be rescinded, and the requester will need to start the application process again.
For the purposes of this program, a flight in any ADS-B airspace will suffice for the sake of a PIA test flight. Moreover, the test does not need to be a dedicated flight. Aircraft owners may elect to complete the test as part of any routine flight following the installation of a PIA. If you cannot perform a flight test within 30 calendar days of receiving your PIA assignment, please respond to the email you received issuing your PIA. The FAA may grant an extension if no other flights by that aircraft have occurred.
While an aircraft operator would be able to continue to use the PIA assignment as long as desired, operators may choose to request a new PIA on a periodic basis.
During Phase 1 of the PIA program, where the program is administered by the FAA, aircraft operators will be able to request a new PIA assignment following a 60-calendar day period from their previous PIA assignment.
Phase 2 of the PIA program is expected to start in mid-2022, where the operation, monitoring and maintenance of the program is transitioned to a third-party service provider. After this transition is complete, operators will be able to request a new PIA assignment following a 20-calendar day period from their previous PIA assignment.