Who runs it ?
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is the data controller. It was created to promote and safeguard the production and publication of statistics to serve the public good. The Census Act 1920 ensures that all personal data is treated securely, and it is a criminal offence for ONS staff, or suppliers, to misuse or misappropriate that data.
The Data Protection Officer (DPO) is the person taking charge of providing us with advice and guidance on the ways in which ONS can best protect the information it collects and how it is used.
We contacted the current DPO Mark Cottam and asked him “How safe is our personal census data?”. This was his response:
“Personal information you provide in the Census is kept completely confidential and is protected by law. Personal information is any information that could allow you to be identified, for example your name, address, or date of birth. We do not share this with anyone. Your census record is kept secure for 100 years and only then is it made public and can be seen by future generations.
Everyone working on the census (including all suppliers) are subject to strict confidentiality provisions and it is a crime for them to unlawfully share personal census information. The personal information you put on your census is only used for statistical purposes. Statistics produced by ONS will never contain any information that will allow you or anyone you live with to be identified. Hopefully, this answers your concerns, but please do not hesitate to get back in touch if you have any further queries”.
You can ask your own questions at DPO@statistics.gov.uk
You can get additional information on your personal data rights from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) by emailing email@example.com