EDR Protects its Sanborn Map® Collection

We have filed a copyright infringement action against ERIS Information Inc. in order to stop its unlawful use of our Sanborn Map® collection. The complaint alleges that ERIS has been illegally copying, selling, and distributing our Sanborn Maps without our permission and on a large scale. We have reached out to ERIS to resolve this matter amicably, but we have been unable to reach a resolution. Accordingly, we are taking legal action to protect our intellectual property rights and our significant investment in the Sanborn Map collection.

We acquired the Sanborn Map collection in 1996. The maps were carefully crafted by cartographers who tracked changes in landscapes, property boundaries and land uses, and then arranged and illustrated these features in detail. This craftsmanship is reflected in each Sanborn Map, and we are proud to serve as the owner and custodian of this important historical resource.

Over the years, our team has worked diligently to make Sanborn Maps more usable, including digitizing and georeferencing the entire collection into a seamless mosaic that is easier to read, faster to search, and more reliable. In addition, we’ve developed interactive workflow tools that are saving customers time and allowing them to extract more accurate insight.

And we’re not done – we’re continuing to find ways for improving the search process to meet customer needs. We have a long history of being pioneers in our field, and we’re committed to innovating and supporting the next generation of industry professionals.


A History of Investing in the Sanborn Maps®

Linking Technology with Tradition®


The Sanborn Company begins creating fire insurance maps.


The first Sanborn Map is published by the Sanborn Company.  

1867 -

Sanborn Maps are crafted by highly skilled cartographers who track changes in cities and towns, creating a detailed visual and textual record of the United States. The maps become a valuable resource for environmental due diligence professionals, who use the maps to gain insights about potential environmental issues.


EDR acquires the Sanborn Map Company – including the intellectual property rights to a rich collection of Sanborn Maps – and invests in a customer-driven strategy to innovate and improve access to the maps. EDR immediately commences the significant task of manually digitizing and georeferencing over 1.2 million maps, including those maps available in the public domain and those under copyright protection.


Over 1.2 million maps are digitized and EDR becomes the only source for accessing the most complete, comprehensive, digital catalog of Sanborn Maps. The ability to electronically search the Sanborn Map collection and receive digital copies on the computer desktop has a revolutionary impact on the speed and efficiency of environmental due diligence.


Using newer technologies, EDR re-digitizes the Sanborn Map collection in high resolution and georeferences the images to street level accuracy, stitching them together into a seamless mosaic. This makes the search process faster, easier, and more reliable.


EDR integrates Sanborn Maps into the VEC App.  For the first time, customers can view georeferenced Sanborn Maps in an online, interactive web browser interface.


EDR adds Sanborn Maps to Lightbox®, our online interactive application, which combines current and historical maps with modern mapping functions. Customers can now analyze maps more quickly and accurately, overlay Sanborn Maps on aerial photos, measure distances, and create site drawings.


EDR celebrates 25 years of providing customers with innovative and valuable information and workflow tools that leverage the latest technologies.


EDR adds target property boundary outlines to Sanborn Map Reports, helping customers quickly identify and document the property back through time. 


Today, EDR’s ongoing investment in R&D leverages the latest technologies and customer feedback to expand the value of the Sanborn Map collection. Each member of EDR’s team – from product managers and technologists, to sales, marketing, and customer care representatives – is proud to serve as the custodian of this valuable historical record.

As we head into our 30th year meeting the needs of the environmental professional community, EDR continues to listen to our trusted customers for ways we can help you more effectively perform environmental due diligence. We thank you for being with us on this journey and look forward to supporting your future needs.

Questions about our Sanborn Maps®

What are Sanborn Maps®?


Sanborn Maps were crafted by cartographers who carefully tracked changes in landscapes, property boundaries and land uses in the United States, and then arranged and illustrated these features in astonishing detail. Each map reflects the care and craftsmanship of Sanborn’s cartographers and are a valuable visual and textual record of American cities and towns during the 19th and 20th centuries.

Originally created for the fire insurance industry, today Sanborn Maps are an essential resource for environmental due diligence professionals, providing valuable insights into historical land uses and property assessments.


Why has EDR filed legal action against ERIS?


We believe that ERIS is illegally copying, selling, and distributing our Sanborn Maps without our permission and that its actions constitute copyright infringement.

EDR purchased the Sanborn Map collection in 1996 – since then, we have made significant investments to digitize the maps, integrate them with modern technologies and make them more usable, accessible, and valuable for our customers.


What types of investments has EDR made since purchasing Sanborn Maps to improve customer experience?


Prior to EDR’s acquisition of the Sanborn Map collection, environmental professionals who used Sanborn Maps for due diligence had to locate hard copy volumes or microfilm records in local libraries, a process that could take days or even weeks.

EDR has made significant investments to improve access and add functionality to Sanborn Maps for our customers. Our innovative offerings provide our customers a faster, easier, and more effective way of using the maps.


  • We digitized the entire Sanborn Map collection in high resolution.

  • We georeferenced the maps into a seamless mosaic, making identifying and reading target property and adjoining maps faster and more reliable.

  • We also developed powerful interactive online tools like Lightbox, enabling customers to overlay Sanborn Maps on aerial photos, measure distances and create site drawings.


Who can I contact with additional questions?


Please click here to get in touch with us.

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