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Safe data versus safe setting: access to microdata from the British Census

Record type: Article

Census offices are squeezed between users demanding ever more data and concerns about data confidentiality and privacy. They respond by releasing data either in a tightly controlled setting or in a securely anonymised form to prevent identification. These two routes have been chosen for two separate products from the 1991 British Census of Population: the Samples of Anonymised Records and the linked census Longitudinal Study. In this paper the implications of the two policies are compared. In broad terms, ease of access in the former route is traded for fullness of information in the second. In the final sections of the paper, the risks of identification disclosure in both datasets are assessed. /// Les officiels du recensement sont presses entre les utilisateurs exigeant plus de donnees que jamais, et l'inquietude a l'egard de les menaces d'atteinte a la vie privee et a son caractere confidentiel. En reponse, les officiels mettent les donnees en circulation soit dans un environment etroitment controlle, ou alors sous une forme rendue sure et anonyme afin de prevenir toute identification. Ceux sont les deux routes choisies pour deux produits distinct du Recensement de la Population britannique en 1991: les echantillons de donnees rendue anonymes et l'etude enchaine Longitudinal Study (etude longitudinale). Dans cet article, les implications des deux methodes sont comparees. Generalement parlant, la facilite d'acces de la premiere route est troquee contre la richesse d'information de la seconde. Dans les dernier paragraphes, les risques de revelation d'identite sont evalues dans les deux dossiers.

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Citation

Marsh, C., Dale, A. and Skinner, C.J. (1994) Safe data versus safe setting: access to microdata from the British Census International Statistical Review, 62, (1), pp. 35-53. (doi:10.2307/1403544).

More information

Published date: April 1994

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 34668
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/34668
ISSN: 0306-7734
PURE UUID: 179bdd60-1c77-46ba-bb94-1db231e48033

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Date deposited: 23 Jan 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:49

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Contributors

Author: C. Marsh
Author: A. Dale
Author: C.J. Skinner

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