How to Become a Ci Search™ Ninja (The Basics)

Thousands of customs compliance professionals use CUSTOMS Info every day, but few of them know how to get the most out of its most powerful tool: Ci Search™. This week we will be doing a three part series that will take you through the steps to become a Ci Search™ power user. We will go from the most basic search skills to the advanced skills that will help you become a Ci Search™ Ninja.

  1. The Basics: Navigation and simple searches
  2. Intermediate: Basic search operators and Ci Alerts
  3. Advanced: Advanced search operators and formulas

Ci Search Basics


This post will deal with the most basic questions that a new user may have about Ci Search™ and introduce users to it basic functions and features.

Where can I find Ci Search?

Let’s start at the most basic level. Ci Search is found under the “Ci Search” tab in the CUSTOMS Info Subscription site.

What are the default settings?

Searching no longer requires selecting individual document types to search, but rather all document types are searched by default. If a document type has search results, it is highlighted in blue and the results count is displayed.  If no results are found for a document type, the document type stays greyed out. You can change which documents are searched by clicking on the “Edit” button on any of the tables.

How do I perform a search in Ci Search™?


As with any search engine, results depend on keywords input by users. A “keyword” for our purposes is defined as any string of text separated by a space. To search for one or more keywords in a document, enter them in the search bar and press the Enter Key or click the Search button with the mouse;

Example: shoe

Example: leather shoes

By entering your keywords without any modifiers, it will search all of the documents containing all of the keywords together or separately.

To search for only instances when your keywords are grouped together in a specific sequence, enclose the words of the phrase with double quotes;

Example: "leather shoes"

How do I view documents in the search results?

When any document type (US Rulings, Tariff, Explanatory notes, etc…) has results for your keywords, the number of results is displayed next to the corresponding document type. These numbers are hyperlinked to a results page where you can view the specific documents with your search terms highlighted. Simply click on the number next to the document type to jump to the results. To come back to the original search page, just click on the “Back” button in the top right hand corner.

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