Reporting anomalies abound in August NICS data, NSSF says

The Federal Bureau of Investigation updated its computer system last month, spurring background check reporting anomalies for multiple states, a leading industry trade association said Wednesday.

Mike Bazinet, a spokesman with the National Shooting Sports Foundation, says it will not release an analysis of August data pulled from the National Instant Criminal Background Check System this month “unless and until” its confidence in the reported numbers “can be restored.”

The revelation comes amidst media reports of another record-breaking month of background checks, and by proxy, gun sales, across the country.

The FBI did not return requests for comment Wednesday about possible glitches in NICS.

Firearms dealers in Ohio and Idaho told local news stations last month the computer system update caused delays in background check processing times for customers.

“We had customers in here waiting an hour to three hours,” said Lee Sredniawa, manager at Fin Feather Fur Outfitters in Youngstown, Ohio, during an interview with WKBN News. “Some of them, we said, ‘Hey, we’ll call you when we hear. There’s nothing we can do.”

NSSF tracks monthly trends in gun sales using NICS data. It calculates “adjusted” background check numbers by subtracting out permit checks and rechecks from monthly totals. Last month’s analysis of NICS data revealed the biggest July on record for background checks nationwide.