ISO 8601

ISO 8601 is an international standard that specifies the format for representing dates and times. It aims to provide a clear and consistent way to express dates and times across different countries and cultures, avoiding ambiguity and misinterpretation.

Definition and purpose

The primary purpose of ISO 8601 is to eliminate the confusion that can arise from different national date and time formats and provide a standard way of representing dates and times for international communication. It addresses various components of date and time, including format, representation, and interchange.

Governing Body

ISO 8601 is developed and maintained by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

Last updated

ISO 8601 was last updated in 2019. 

Applies to

ISO 8601 is applicable across all industries and sectors that require standardized date and time representations. This includes information technology, international trade, transportation, communications, and any organization involved in global operations.

Controls and requirements

ISO 8601 specifies the requirements for date and time representations, including:

  • Date Formats: Year, month, and day representation (e.g., YYYY-MM-DD).
  • Time Formats: Hour, minute, and second representation (e.g., hh:mm:ss).
  • Combined Date and Time: Standards for combining dates and times in a single expression.
  • Time Zone Designators: Representing time zone differences from Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
  • Week Numbering: Guidelines for representing week dates.
  • Recurring Time Intervals: Standards for representing recurring events and intervals.

Please refer to the official ISO 8601 documentation for details on controls and requirements.

Audit type, frequency, and duration

Audits related to ISO 8601 compliance would typically involve reviewing data formats in information systems, documentation, and communications to ensure they align with the standard. As ISO 8601 relates to data format standards, audits would generally occur during system reviews, updates, or when new systems are being implemented.

The duration of such audits depends on the extent of the systems, documentation, and data being reviewed.

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