In an extensive form game, an assessment is said to satisfy the one-deviation property if for all possible payoffs at the terminal nodes the following holds: if a player at each of his information sets cannot improve upon his expected payoff by deviating unilaterally at this information set only, he cannot do so by deviating at any arbitrary collection of information sets. Hendon et al. (1996. Games econom. Behav. 12, 274–282) have shown that pre-consistency of assessments implies the one-deviation property. In this note, it is shown that an appropriate weakening of pre-consistency, termed updating consistency, is both a sufficient and necessary condition for the one-deviation property. The result is extended to the context of rationalizability.