How do i look up a company by their duns number

thinking man

So why do you need a Dun & Bradstreet ID number?

It’s basically the starting point for establishing a business credit profile. You’ll soon realize that your D-U-N-S Number is required on the majority of your corporate credit applications because it’s the most widely used identifying number for businesses in the United States.

The mistake that most business owners make is assuming incorrectly that they already have a D-U-N-S Number. The purpose of this post is to show you how to access the Dun & Bradstreet (DNB) number directory to see if you already have one.

First, go to the Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S Number lookup website, enter your business name, city, and state in the search box, and then click on the search button. (You can always click on the “Start a Live Chat” tab if you need additional help or have specific questions.)

Once you click on the search button to search for your company you’ll see a list of possible matches. Click on the tab that you believe is a close match to your company name so you can request access to your DNB file.

Keep in mind that if your company moved at one point, you may see the previous city and state listed, so make sure you keep an eye out for this as well.

Now, if your company does not show up in the search results, then most likely you do not have a Dun & Bradstreet ID number. So the next step would be to get a D-U-N-S Number.

But if you do find a match, the next step is requesting access to your file. To prevent others from accessing your company’s credit file, DNB requires that you verify your information prior to them sending you information to review and/or update your file.

Once you enter your information and click the “submit” tab, DNB will send you an email providing you with your company’s DNB login information, or in some cases may require you to contact their customer resource center for additional information.

So before you apply for a D-U-N-S Number, you should first check the Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S Number Lookup so you don’t make the mistake of creating duplicate credit profiles.

More articles by AllBusiness.com:

Category:Common Company Lookup Questions

Not all Organizations will appear in The Company Lookup Tool. Records are derived from the Marketable Database at Dun&Bradstreet (D&B), so only Organizations with a DUNS Number may appear in the Company Lookup Tool. Typically D&B Company Records aren’t included in our system if they are lacking information, opted to be delisted from the marketable file, or are being held off the Marketable list for an undisclosed reason by D&B.
If you have a DUNS Number, try finding your record on https://iupdate.dnb.com/iUpdate/companylookup.htm. Once you Verify and Authenticate your identity, you should be able to access and update your information as needed there. If you have any issues, contact the Phone number in the link. If lacking a Record with D&B, you can sign up at their site.

D-U-N-S® Number

The D-U-N-S Number is a unique nine-digit number that identifies business entities on a location-specific basis. Assigned and maintained by Dun & Bradstreet (D&B), the D-U-N-S Number is widely used as a standard business identifier.

Your D-U-N-S Number will be used to check the identity and legal entity status of your organization as part of our enrollment verification process for joining the Apple Developer Program or the Apple Developer Enterprise Program. While many types of businesses can receive a D-U-N-S Number, your business must be recognized as a legal entity (such as a corporation, limited partnership, or limited liability company) to enter into the legal terms and obligations of Apple Developer Program agreements. DBAs, fictitious businesses, trade names, and branches are not accepted.

Companies and educational institutions must provide a D-U-N-S Number registered to their legal entity. A D-U-N-S Number is optional for government organizations. If you’re enrolling as an individual, you don’t need a D-U-N-S Number.

Requesting a

D-U-N-S Number

D&B may have already assigned your organization a free D-U-N-S Number. Before enrolling, look up your organization to see if you have a D-U-N-S Number. If your company is not listed, you’ll have the option to submit your information to Dun & Bradstreet for a free D-U-N-S Number.

You’ll be asked for the following information when looking up your organization:

  • Legal entity name
  • Headquarters address
  • Mailing address
  • Your work contact information

As part of their verification process, a D&B representative may contact you directly for more information (such as your business type or number of employees). Please have your business registration documents ready.

Receiving and managing your

D-U-N-S Number

After requesting a D-U-N-S Number, please allow up to 5 business days to receive your number from D&B. Expediting your D-U-N-S Number creation process will not shorten this waiting period. If your application has taken longer than two weeks to process, please email D&B.

Once you receive your D-U-N-S Number, please allow up to 2 business days for Apple to receive your information from D&B. After this period, you may enroll as a company/organization in the Apple Developer Program.

To update your D&B profile, email D&B. Please note that it takes up to two business days for D&B to provide updated information to Apple.

During enrollment I received the message, “Your organization is not listed as a legal entity.” What does this mean?

The business you entered is either listed in the D&B database with a different legal status (such as a sole proprietorship), or its legal status has not been verified. When enrolling, make sure to use the legal entity name of your organization, as Apple does not accept DBAs, fictitious businesses, trade names, or branches for enrollment as a company/organization. If your legal status is a sole proprietorship/single person business, enroll as an individual. If you believe your business should be listed as a legal entity, have your business registration documents ready and email D&B. Complete business registration documents are required to verify your organization’s legal status.

Unique Entity Identifier Update

The New Unique Entity Identifier is Here

On April 4, 2022, the federal government stopped using the DUNS Number to uniquely identify entities. Now, entities doing business with the federal government use the Unique Entity ID created in SAM.gov. They no longer have to go to a third-party website to obtain their identifier. This transition allows the government to streamline the entity identification and validation process, making it easier and less burdensome for entities to do business with the federal government.

The Integrated Award Environment (IAE) manages several systems including SAM.gov, FPDS, eSRS, FSRS, CPARS and FAPIIS. All SAM.gov registrants have been assigned their Unique Entity IDs and can view them in SAM.gov. To learn more about this transition, please see the information below. Join and follow our community on Interact to be notified of the latest news and information about changes happening at IAE.

What Action Do I Need to Take?

If your entity is registered in SAM.gov today, your Unique Entity ID has already been assigned and is viewable in SAM.gov. This includes inactive registrations. The Unique Entity ID is located on your entity registration record. Remember, you must be signed in to your SAM.gov account to view entity records. To learn how to view your Unique Entity ID go to this help article.

Refer to the Guide to Getting a Unique Entity ID if you want to get a Unique Entity ID for your organization without having to complete an entity registration. If you only conduct certain types of transactions, such as reporting as a sub-awardee, you may not need to complete an entity registration. Your entity may only need a Unique Entity ID.

If you operate a system that connects with IAE systems, documentation about using APIs to access SAM.gov is found at is open.GSA.gov. The latest version of FPDS ATOM feed includes the Unique Entity ID.

Agency system owners are encouraged to join the Technical Interface Community (email [email protected] to join).

Do IAE systems require the use of the new Unique Entity ID?

The Unique Entity ID is the official identifier for doing business with the U.S. Government as of April 4, 2022.

  • Entities registering in SAM.gov are assigned a Unique Entity ID as a part of the registration process.
  • Entity uniqueness continues to be validated by an entity validation service.
  • Subcontracting reporting requires the Unique Entity ID obtained in SAM.gov.
  • Interfacing systems must use the Unique Entity ID.

Is the Unique Entity ID viewable in IAE systems?

If your entity is registered in SAM.gov today, you already have your Unique Entity ID and it is viewable in SAM.gov. This includes inactive registrations.

All other IAE systems (CPARS, FPDS, FAPIIS, etc.) currently display and accept the Unique Entity ID.

Where Do I Get More Information?

Visit UEI Technical Specifications and API Information page to learn more about UEI/EVS technical specifications for interfacing systems and sample data extracts.

  • The process to get a Unique Entity ID to do business with the government changed.
  • The definition of entity uniqueness did not change.

The official identifier for doing business with the U.S. Government changed.

Change can be confusing and frustrating. To make the change easier, we shared information about the changes and transition plan.

During the transition, we:

  • Phased out the DUNS Number as the official identifier for doing business with the federal government.
  • Introduced a new Unique Entity ID, generated in the System for Award Management (SAM.gov), as the official identifier for doing business with the government.
  • Made it easier to get a Unique Entity ID to do business with the government.
  • Transitioned to a new service provider to validate entity uniqueness.

  • Get your Unique Entity ID and register your entity to do business with the U.S. government.
  • Make any updates to your legal business name and physical address associated with the Unique Entity ID.
  • Find customer support at a single helpdesk for all Unique Entity ID and entity registration issues.

The process to get a Unique Entity ID to do business with the government changed. With the transition, we are made it easier to get a Unique Entity ID by streamlining the request and ongoing management process. You go to a single place, SAM.gov, to:

is not changing.

  • Integrated Award Environment (IAE) acquires commercial entity validation services (EVS) to validate entity uniqueness and entity core data.
  • Uniqueness is based on an entity being a separate legal entity associated with a separate physical address.
  • Based on the uniqueness determination, a Unique Entity ID is assigned to that entity.

The definition of what makes an entity unique

The change we made creates predictability for the cost of entity validation services. By separating the government requirement for a Unique Entity ID from the government requirement to validate that the entities are unique, we introduced competitiveness into entity validation services. We then competed and awarded a new contract for entity validation services that is not connected to the identifier itself. We chose to have the new, non-proprietary identifier both requested in and generated by SAM.gov to reduce the burden of change; the transition in identifiers only needs to happen once, even if in the future a different entity validation service provider is selected.

Transition Phase: (July 2019-Transition Completion)

  • The DUNS Number remains the official identifier for doing business with the U.S. Government.
  • Entities continue to register in SAM.gov using the DUNS Number assigned by D&B.
  • Entity uniqueness continues to be validated by D&B as part of the DUNS Number assignment process.
  • GSA published updated technical specifications, which include the new SAM-generated Unique Entity ID, for interfacing systems in December 2019.
  • GSA develops the tools needed to generate Unique Entity IDs.
  • GSA develops an interface to new entity validation service provider to determine entity uniqueness.
  • GSA supports robust testing of new interfaces with agency systems.
  • GSA communicates upcoming changes to stakeholders, sharing more detail as available

Transition Complete (04/04/2022)

  • The SAM-generated Unique Entity ID becomes the official identifier for doing business with the U.S. Government.
  • Entities request new Unique Entity IDs through SAM.gov before starting their entity registration.
  • Entity uniqueness is determined by the new entity validation service provider.

Transition for Existing Entities

  • Your registration was automatically assigned a new Unique Entity ID which is displayed in SAM.gov.
  • The purpose of registration, core data, assertions, representations & certifications, points of contacts, etc. in SAM.gov will not change and no one will be required to re-enter this data.

  • December 2014 – proprietary references removed from 2 CFR.
  • On October 31, 2016, the FAR was amended via a final rule to re-designate the terminology for unique identification of entities receiving federal awards. The change to the FAR eliminated references to the proprietary DUNS Number, and provided appropriate references to the website where information on the unique entity identifier used for federal awards would be located. The final rule also established the definition of “unique entity identifier.”
  • November 2016 – OMB (OFFM and OFPP) created an interagency working group to zero-base business needs for entity validation and verification requirements.
  • In 2017 – GSA engaged the public and Integrated Award Environment (IAE) governance on entity validation and a government identifier:
    • February – GSA released a Request For Information (RFI) and vendor engagement for entity validation services.
    • July – the final policy and business outcomes for validation and verification were completed.
    • October – GSA released a second RFI and vendor engagement for entity verification services.
  • August 2018 – GSA released a Request for Proposal for governmentwide entity validation services inclusive of new government-owned Unique Entity ID approach.
  • November 2018 – GSA convened an interagency team to make recommendations on the standards for a government-owned Unique Entity ID to use in federal awarding and management processes.
  • In March 2019, GSA awarded a contract for entity validation services.
  • June – a working group delivered recommendations on Unique Entity ID standards to IAE governance; governance approved standard for publication.
  • July – GSA published a Federal Register notice containing standards for Unique Entity IDs and held a public meeting to review the standards
  • October – convened an interagency, cross-functional working group to identify and resolve policy and IT issues for implementation.
  • October 2020 – The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) directed federal agencies to finalize their transition to using the SAM-generated unique entity identifier by April 2022. GSA will be contracting with D&B to ensure full continuity of services—including DUNS Number assignment, monitoring, and validation of entity uniqueness—during the extended transition period.

Further Questions

Press inquiries should be sent to [email protected]

The shortcut to this page is gsa.gov/entityid

Written by Jane