Bundesamt für Seeschifffahrt und Hydrographie
Referat S14
Bernhard-Nocht-Straße 78
20359 Hamburg

Dr. Anja Eikermann
Phone: +49 40 3190-7420
Mail: maritime.security@bsh.de

Documents · Certifications

The Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR) provides the history of a ship from its initial commissioning to its final decommissioning. It records ship related data such as name, owner, bareboat charterer and changes thereof to make them traceable.

On board of any ship engaged on international voyages and subject to part A of chapter I of the SOLAS Convention the original of the Continuous Synopsis Record must be kept and made available for inspection at all times. Sanctions may be imposed on ships not meeting this obligation. The CSR will be re-issued upon any change of its content or of the ship’s flag within three months from the date of the change.

Issuance of a CSR

A CSR must be applied for at the BSH, if:

  • the ship has been registered in the German shipping register,
  • the ship changes to a bareboat register or returns from there, or
  • the ship changes to the register of a foreign flag or returns from there, or
  • the content of the CSR is changed.

The following documents are to be submitted:

  • Application for the issuance of a CSR including attachment; you can e-mail this application form via maritime.security@bsh.de to the BSH without a signature,
  • A copy of the extract from the shipping register, and
  • Copies of all previously issued CSRs for the ship, including the closing-CSR of the former flag.

Please note:

From 01 July 2024 the CSR to be issued will contain nos. 12 and 13 as well. Please also complete the boxes for nos. 12 and 13 in your application forms with the respective information. Relevant proof is not required to be submitted.

In principle, CSRs issued prior to the 01 July 2024 will not be corrected or reissued. In justified cases you may apply for a reissue of a CSR. You will be charged a fee for this and you have to submit seperate proof for the entries for nos. 12 and 13.

Change of entries in the CSR

Amendments to the CSR, made by the ship’s master or company to reflect changes of e.g. the ship’s flag, name, port of registry, owner and company (ISM) must be documented in an amendment sheet. This amendment sheet is part of the CSR documents and the administration must be informed accordingly.

Please note:
Any changes must be reflected in an amendment sheet signed by the master or the company. This amendment sheet provisionally replaces the original CSR until this is re-issued within a maximum period of three months.
The BSH strongly recommends to keep the amendment sheets permanently on board of the ship for possible inspections.

For further information please refer to:

Please note also the requirements of the law of the flag and the notice regarding company and registered owners identity numbers further below.

The ISPS requirements apply, inter alia, to cargo ships of 500 GT and above and to passenger ships regardless of size, engaged on international voyages. These ships must carry an International Ship Security Certificate (ISSC) by which the flag state administration confirms that the security system has been verified, the ship complies with all requirements and a ship security plan (SSP), approved by the flag state administration, is available. The ISSC must be presented regularly at inspections of the ship in ports. A missing or expired certificate may imply heavy sanctions.


A full term ISSC may only be issued after:

  • the approved ship security plan has been implemented on board of the ship for at least 30 days, and
  • a Recognized Security Organisation, (RSO), recognized by the BSH, has carried out an initial verification of compliance with all relevant requirements.

Therefore, an interim-ISSC is issued for newbuildings and for ships changing flag. The interim-ISSC is valid for a maximum period of 6 months and may not be extended! A second interim-ISSC is only issued in exceptional circumstances.

The issuance of a (full-term or interim) ISSC must be applied for at the BSH with the following documents to be submitted:

  • the completed Application for the issuance of an Interim-ISSC and ISSC, incl. enclosure;
    you can e-mail this application form to maritime.security@bsh.de without a signature,
  • a copy of the previous (full-term or interim) ISSC of a foreign flag,
  • the latest verification record of the RSO or flag state administration of the ship security plan (SSP) under the previous flag,
  • a confirmation of the RSO that the new (German) SSP has been submitted and is available on board of the ship,
  • a copy of the extract from the shipping register, and
  • proof that the ship safety alert system (SSAS) on board of the ship is operational (report of a test alarm after change of flag).

In addition, if a ship is newly built, the management has changed or if it is changing to the German flag, a confirmation by a RSO must be submitted that an interim verification (pre-audit) has been carried out..

The initial-verification on board by the RSO may only be carried out after the ship security plan has been approved and placed on board at least 30 days prior. Its purpose is a detailed verification of the entire security system on board of the ship. Upon successful verification, the BSH will be directly informed by the RSO and will issue the full-term ISSC for a period of validity of 5 years. To maintain the validity of the certificate over the entire period an intermediate verification has to be carried out by a RSO between the second and the third anniversary date of the certificate.


The responsibilities between a ship and a port facility or another ship have to be established in the Declaration of Security. This holds in particular for a shift in responsibilities, for the various security levels and for dealings with ships and port facilities that are not bound by the ISPS requirements. At the same time, the requirements of the ISPS-Codes need to be complied with.

The German flag state sets mandatory requirements in case a Declaration of Security with section 1 of § 9 of the "See-Eigensicherungsverordnung" (Ordinance on Shipboard Security Measures, SeeEigensichV) is required:

Object 1 Object 2 Remarks
ISPS vessel NON-ISPS vessel § 9 Abs. 1 Nr. 1
(= own DoS because SSO or PFSO not named)
ISPS vessel NON-ISPS port facility § 9 Abs. 1 Nr. 1
(= own DoS because SSO or PFSO not named)
ISPS vessel security level > ISPS vessel security level < § 9 Abs. 1 Nr. 2
ISPS vessel security level < ISPS vessel security level > § 9 Abs. 1 Nr. 2
ISPS vessel security level > ISPS port facility security level < § 9 Abs. 1 Nr. 3

Moreover, completion of a DoS is required whenever a ship's competence laid down in a vessel’s SSP is transferred to the port facility, e.g. ID checks, luggage inspections etc. The purpose of this is to prove transfer of competence from the SSO to the port facility. The same applies in case of a transfer of competence to another ship (e.g. in case of rafts of laid-up ships). Rafts of laid-up ships are several (at least two) ships that are moored together in a row or in a bundle withouth the outside ship being moored to the pier.

Additional information

Ships calling routinely at certain ports, always with identical framework conditions, have the option under Sec. 9 (4), Ordinance on Shipboard Security Measures, to agree upon a permanent DoS (internationally also known as Continuous DoS) for a period of a year at the most. The conclusion of a permanent DoS requires written approval from the BSH. Applications for approval can be submitted informally to the BSH. A signed DoS form and a detailed description of the conditions and circumstances must be enclosed with the application. 

Under Sec. 9 (6), Ordinance on Shipboard Security Measures, the DoS must be kept on board German vessels for at least one year from the date of issue. Competent bodies may verify this.

The form of the DoS must comply with the notification by the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Housing (VkBl. 13/2004, S.
383) (see BSH website).


The following specimens comply with the requirements (see also Verkehrsblatt 13/2004 in German only):

Company and registered owner identification number

In all IMO member states the company and registered owner identification number scheme applies. All companies and registered owners must be given a unique identification number. This number may be received free of charge from the website of IHS Markit / Lloyd’ s Register – Fairplay Ltd. who are acting on behalf of the IMO. Please check first, if numbers have already been assigned, before applying for indentification numbers.

The identification numbers are mandatory parts

  • of the Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR) and
  • of the (full-term or interim) International Ship Security Certificate (ISSC).

For this reason, please name the identification numbers when you apply for the issuance of a CSR or an (interim) ISSC to the BSH.

Previously issued certificates without these identification numbers remain valid until a relevant change occurs (CSR) or till their expiry (ISSC).