Privacy and confidentiality

The Statistics Act

The Statistics Act requires that all census information be kept confidential. All Statistics Canada employees have taken an oath of secrecy. The confidentiality of your personal census information is your right and it cannot be given to anyone outside Statistics Canada. Your census questionnaire will be retained in accordance with legislative requirements and stored securely.

Data security

Because the security of your information is of paramount importance to Statistics Canada, census data are stored on Statistics Canada systems that are isolated from any other network. External devices, such as telephone dial-in services that connect to Statistics Canada's confidential data storage systems, are not permitted, making it impossible to break into Statistics Canada's databases.

In addition, Statistics Canada's premises have controlled access so that only persons with the appropriate security clearance who have taken the oath of secrecy can enter facilities housing confidential data. Anyone from outside Statistics Canada needing entrance to these premises is escorted by a Statistics Canada employee at all times. Only Statistics Canada employees see your Census of Agriculture questionnaire and data.

Privacy and the Internet

Statistics Canada takes the protection of confidential information provided online very seriously. A secure login process and strong encryption are key elements in helping to prevent anyone from accessing or tampering with your census information when you complete and send it online.

Confidentiality procedures

Statistics Canada places the highest priority on maintaining the confidentiality of information from individual census questionnaires at all stages of the census process. All tabulated data are subject to confidentiality procedures, including a series of computerized checks on each data table to suppress any data that may identify a particular agricultural operation or individual. In all cases complementary data are also suppressed so that aggregate subtotals and totals in each table can be published. Data for geographic areas with very few agricultural operations are not released separately, but are merged with data from one or more geographically adjacent areas.