Below you will find answers to the most common questions asked by commercial partners who wish to license the dataset for business purposes.
Please also have a look at our project-wide FAQ, which covers product-related questions (e.g. update frequency, project scope).
OpenSanctions builds and publishes a high-quality, up-to-date dataset of entities of interest (people and companies), including international sanctions targets, known criminal figures and politically exposed persons (PEPs). To do so, we consolidate and deduplicate data from hundreds of sources covering 240+ countries and territories.
We build the raw materials innovative services need. By making this data a readily accessible commodity, we help businesses to reduce their exposure to risk and startups to develop cutting-edge technology and services.
We do things openly and transparently. That’s why, besides making our bulk data easily accessible, publishing our code and details about our algorithms, we also invite commercial partners to self-host our API for enhanced privacy and performance.
Our pricing is designed such that
If you're unsure if your intended use case qualifies as internal use, please just contact us so we can learn a bit about your needs and find a fair solution.
The licensing cost for OpenSanctions amounts to about one engineering day per month. We think that with the level of data cleaning and de-duplication we provide, our comprehensive documentation and ever-growing collections of crawlers, this is a good deal.
It’s really up to you! Some of the use cases we have seen include:
Please note that any use of the data undertaken by for-profit businesses that do not directly generate revenue (product demos, showcases) are considered commercial use. The following exemptions apply:
Beyond the definition of non-commercial use provided by Creative Commons, we also grant a zero-cost license to the groups listed below:
Yes. We’re keen to support projects or products that have not gone to market yet by granting a heavily discounted use of the OpenSanctions database during the development period.
While our API service is metered, we don't generally consider usage as a factor in how we price the bulk data service. If your own pricing structure for bulk data use is prohibitive for you, please get in touch and we’ll find a solution.
OpenSanctions internally uses a rich data model called FollowTheMoney to store its data. For developers, we recommend using the JSON-based data exports, while analysts are encouraged to explore the simplified CSV format we provide exports in.
We’re keen to consider additional export formats that our partners might find useful. Please contact us to share your requirements and discuss an implementation strategy.
At the moment, we only publish whatever holdings and beneficial owners are specified in our data sources (e.g. the US OFAC SDN Advanced Format).
A big part of our roadmap is to build connections with other datasets, such as OpenCorporates and OpenOwnership, in particular in order to document the corporate ownership structures associated with sanctioned entities (cf. OFAC 50% rule).
We commonly use two methods for payment:
OpenSanctions is based in Germany. We may be required to apply 19% VAT on invoices inside the EU where the reverse charge method does not apply.
We have a standard service agreement that covers the use of the OpenSanctions service.
Please also have a look at our policy on customised service agreements (red-lining).
We founded OpenSanctions as an engineering-centric business that creates high-quality data for risk management and sanctions compliance. Our goal is to provide compelling KYC/AML information at a competitive price.
To make this possible, we rely on the cooperation of our prospective business partners. Our prices are structured to enable the development and maintenance of the products we offer; our prices are not structured for us to retain a sales-focused legal team.
With that in mind, here are our asks:
If the suggestion of a limited redlining process seems unrealistic to you, this may be an indication that you need to do business with the LexisNexis Industrial Complex.
Thanks to the open source nature of our product, you would not lose access to the data for some time.
Any technologist or organization could pick up our technology and continue maintenance, hopefully relying on the same network of partners we are developing. We’re building a community resource, not a startup.