FBI Committed to Keeping NICS Running

posted on March 26, 2020

When American Rifleman reached out to the FBI asking about the volume of NICS checks and delays, the response was reassuring. Steps have been taken to protect the health of its staff working at the Criminal Justice Information Services division (shown above), and the agency is unwavering in its dedication to handling the record-breaking volume.

"The FBI is taking appropriate measures to ensure the safety of their employees while remaining committed to ensuring national security and pursuing violations of federal law,” the spokesperson responded by e-mail. “At this time, the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Section remains fully operational and will continue to process requests. The NICS Section appreciates the public's patience during this period of national emergency."

The FBI couldn’t provide figures at the time, but the National Shooting Sports Foundation reports that on March 16, NICS volume was 300 percent higher than the year before. Since Feb. 23 the number of backgrounds run through the system has been double the normal volume.

A staff member at North Carolina’s Point Blank Range is “…selling a week’s worth of guns every day,” according to the Salt Lake Tribune. An Indiana FFL told RTV6 Indianapolis that in seven days he’s sold as much as he typically does in a month.

The trend isn’t exclusive to the United States, either. A March 28 Reuter’s news service report from Budapest, Hungary, says, “Hungarians have sought in increasing number to arm themselves for protection in recent weeks, fearing a possible unraveling of law and order if severe shortages set in as the coronavirus pandemic spreads.”

Sales in the United States were already up in 2020, even before the current trend, according to Jurgen Brauer, chief economist for Small Arms Analytics & Forecasting. Earlier this month he explained in a press release that, “…January and February 2020 have been at their highest levels since 2016.”


Brownells (2)
Brownells (2)

Brownells Donates $100K To Special Operations Wounded Warriors

The Brownells donation will allow Special Operations Wounded Warriors (SOWW) to continue its mission of providing therapeutic outdoor experiences, professional therapy and other services to wounded veterans.

The .45 ACP: History & Performance

Spurred by the need for a more powerful cartridge from the experiences of the Moro Rebellion in the Philippines, the .45 ACP has enjoyed extensive popularity in both military and commercial circles for more than a century.

Federal Custom Shop Offers Custom Loads For Springfield Model 2020 Waypoint

Federal's Custom Shop now offers handcrafted ammunition designed particularly for use in Springfield Armory's Model 2020 Waypoint rifle.

The Taurus Judge Story

Originally started as a gimmick by Taurus with its .45 Long Colt revolvers, the Judge line has established itself in the market as a potent compact package with its .410 bore chambering.

Rossi's Model R92: A Popular Brazilian-Made Lever-Action

The Rossi USA R92 line—based on the Winchester Model 1892—continues that tradition with versions that satisfy everyone from traditionalists who insist on the warmth of wood, to gun owners who demand modern touches.

Favorite Firearms: Granddad’s Winchester Model 62A

Once his grandfather's gun, a pump-action Winchester Model 62A became a personal favorite for NRA member Mike Shoemake.


Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.