FSC Check is not being applied to existing FSC members and certificate holders, at the moment.
About FSC Check
FSC Check is a tool that has been developed to identify whether applicants for certification or membership have any connection to the six unacceptable activities mentioned in FSC’s Policy for Association. Therefore, any new company or individual that wants to get associated with FSC will have to undergo this new step in the existing processes for certification and membership.
FSC is implementing the normative procedure called Disclosure Requirements for Association with FSC (FSC-PRO-10-004) with this tool. Based on the information requirements mentioned in this normative document, FSC Check consists of an online questionnaire that new applicants have to complete.
This automated tool cross-checks the information submitted through the tool with FSC’s database about certificate holders and members. If the results of the information check show that there might be a risk of the applicant being in violation of the FSC Policy for Association (FSC-POL-01-004), then FSC will not associate with such organizations or individuals.
Integration into the system
FSC Check has been integrated within FSC’s existing system to ensure that new applicants for certification and membership do not face undue delays in their entry into FSC. The tool is housed within FSC Connect to ensure easy access for applicants once their profile is created in the FSC database.
- For certification applicants: FSC Check is positioned as a new step before the applicant is invited to sign the Trademark License Agreement (TLA). Read more about this process here.
- For new membership applicants: FSC Check has to be completed by the applicant before they complete the membership application process.
To learn more about how to complete the FSC Check process, click here.
How it works
New applicant added to FSC’s database
The certification body or FSC membership team starts the process by creating a new applicant in FSC’s certification/membership database.
Role of the new applicant
The applicant is invited to answer the questionnaire in FSC Check and submit the requested information. For more information about how to complete the FSC Check process, click here.
The applicant’s information is automatically cross-checked against FSC’s database to assess risk level. The assessment outcome is graded as low or high risk.
Implications of risk levels
1. Low risk
Applicants seeking certification are automatically directed to the TLA signing process. For those seeking membership, their application will be sent to FSC’s committee assessing membership applications for review and approval.
2. High risk
FSC manually assesses the information submitted by the applicant and may request the applicant for additional information.
- If the applicant shows low risk, then they will proceed with their TLA signing or membership process
- If the applicant’s risk level continues to remain high, then FSC rejects their application for association with FSC.
To ensure that an applicant’s data is protected, the tool has been developed based on ISO standards and there are a number of data compliance mechanisms integrated into FSC Check. FSC adheres to General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) regulations, which means that any data stored by FSC (including corporate structure and personnel information) are handled in a strict and compliant manner following FSC’s data handling policies. Sensitive details about an applicant are stored in the FSC Certification Database and access is restricted to a tightly defined set of FSC staff who need to use that data to perform further risk review, when applicable.
Publication of applicant information
FSC will publish an applicant’s basic information on its FSC Certificate Public Dashboard for 30 days to add transparency about who is applying to become a part of the FSC system (a normative requirement). The responses provided or conclusions of the review will not be published. To see the list of certification and membership applicants going through FSC Check, click here.