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852 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 767309 21-Feb-2013 20:44 Send private message

Kyanar:
nunz: 
Turning back to the census. One of the first processes your information goes through is anonimisation. You are turned from Joe Bloggs into a gendered person of certain age, socio econominc demographics, race, religion and other statisitcally relevant features. At this point you are nothing more than a number which cannot be traced back to an individual. Think of it this way - your data is fed into a black box program that a on the other side of an impenertrable wall assigns a number against your stats and then hands it off to the statistical crunching machine.

Your name is no longer able to be put against your stats as the black box doesnt know who you are and the feeder of data doesnt know what number you were given. Your stats are divorced from you.


Studies have actually proven, however, that given sufficiently large data sets, the anonymization process is actually reversible.

I very much doubt that StatsNZ would ever intentionally allow this to occur (its very existence is predicated on the gathering of information deemed either too sensitive or too worthless for the private sector to do it, and census data is the very definition of sensitive) but the fact remains that
a) the forms are not destroyed.  This is a huge risk, though one suspects mitigation of said risk is a key goal there
b) the information in the hands of a malicious individual with sufficient determination and resources can be reversed into data regarding an individual.

It would do a lot to mitigate concern if Stats NZ was a bit more transparent in how they handle the data, and weren't to actually keep it in its original form.


Hi,

Sorry only got as far as page 2, but had to add this in. As some of you may know I work in health, we deal with a lot of private data, and have pretty good processes.

http://www.hinz.org.nz/journal/2012/11/Assessing-Re-identification-Risk-of-De-identified-Health-Data--in-New-Zealand-/1051

A guy I work with sometimes did this work, and I can testify that ancedotally and technically this is possible with our datasets, however to allay the tinfoil hats no one I work with has the time or the inclination to do this, not to mention that the system would catch them out i they tried...

Jon

4076 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 767310 21-Feb-2013 20:45 Send private message

jeffnz: Just tried mine and went straight through to next page with codes provided 

I got it after trying again and finding that I could type letters in there, but not numbers. The one on my form looks like a 4 at first glance but I decided that it's supposed to be a Y. Except that wasn't accepted either (I could type it but it rejected it) so with a bit of imagination it also looks slightly like a U... which it accepted. No idea whether that's the "right" code but it let me in!

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  Reply # 767315 21-Feb-2013 21:00 Send private message

well that was quick and easy , all done




Galaxy S5 G900F
Samsung (custom)  KITKAT 4.4.2 

Galaxy Gear 2  Smart watch (great gadget )





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  Reply # 767354 21-Feb-2013 22:33 Send private message

Jaxson:
joker97: already? I thought it was meant to be collected in a week or two


As I said earlier, you can do it online from as soon as you have the log on code from the census distributor.  I've done mine already too.


first there are people not doing it

second there are people deliberately giving false data

now people are doing the census outside the census date! (5 March)

maybe i've got it all wrong?

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  Reply # 767385 22-Feb-2013 06:58 Send private message

joker97: now people are doing the census outside the census date! (5 March)

The person who delivered the forms said that it's fine to do it before the date, there are only two date-sensitive questions in there (where are you on the 5th, and how did you get to work that day) and if you know what the answers will be in advance then you're allowed to do it earlier. This is backed up by the site letting you do it early.

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 768280 23-Feb-2013 20:03 Send private message

Well, I got the forms and went straight online, didn't bother reading the paper forms except where I needed to quote codes. All over in a flash. Easy enough, no sensitive information required that other govt departments somewhere don't already have in my view.
Quick and painless.

1428 posts

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  Reply # 768516 24-Feb-2013 14:32 Send private message

I put Caledonian for my ethnicity last time so, depending on the IQ of the person keying the form I an either Scottish, European or a native of New Caledonia - who knows? A number of friends (all white) put Pacific Islander, on the grounds that NZ is an island in the Pacific, and that's where they were born.

I like the suggestion of ticking "other" and writing "New Zealander" - that's probably what I will do this time. I never answer the ethnicity or religion questions accurately. To my mind they aren't necessary, are intrusive, and are subject to misuse. It doesn't matter what the rules are now - the paper records are kept indefinitely with your name on them. For instance, as many who completed a census in Germany in the 1930s, there is no reason for the State to know your religion and it can be positively hazardous to tell them. Closer to home, the US interned people declaring "Japanese" in the 1940s, and it's not too far a stretch that it might be used to identify - say - muslims in the interests of "National Security" in the not too distant future. (Pauses to remove tinfoil hat).

The other area I am aware that people falsely declare, because it is in their interest to do so, is income if they have children. I know of a number who consciously under-declare income because they are aware that it can impact on the decile rating, and consequently the government funding, of their local schools. Not sure if enough do it to statistically make a meaningful difference though.

Personally, other than religion and ethnicity, I just complete it honestly. Given tax record etc that they already have they can already figure the rest out anyway - which kind of begs the question of why we need a census. I understand that Germany has coped well without having one for seventy years (see point about religion question above, which has made censuses in bad odour in Gemany ever since), and they still seem able to run the country.

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  Reply # 768531 24-Feb-2013 15:07 Send private message

Behodar:
joker97: now people are doing the census outside the census date! (5 March)

The person who delivered the forms said that it's fine to do it before the date, there are only two date-sensitive questions in there (where are you on the 5th, and how did you get to work that day) and if you know what the answers will be in advance then you're allowed to do it earlier. This is backed up by the site letting you do it early.


Really? My bad ... doing it now lol

79 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 768537 24-Feb-2013 15:40 Send private message

Completed mine online. Couple of questions I found may be problematic for some >

Number 39 lets you choose 'Work at Home' or 'Work away from Home'. Print full address of place you mostly worked at'
What is a plumber going to write? They have a base but most of their time is spent visiting different people's homes everyday

Number 47 says you have to give your phone number if they have any Census 2013 queries they may want to contact you about or if you are selected for a survey following the Census. The number format is area code + number
What would people who only have a cellphone number and use 3g internet(no home line) write?

The notes say the Statistics Act 1975 makes it compulsory to fill out the census form but it doesn't say whether the followup survey is compulsory. Is it?
The notes say this about the followup survey:
- The Maori Social Survey is planned to begin in June 2013 and will involve face to face interviews with about 5,000 people
- The Household Disability Survey is planned to begin in July 2013 and will involve telephone and face to face interviews with about 20,000 people

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  Reply # 768538 24-Feb-2013 15:43 Send private message

heavyusr: Number 47 says you have to give your phone number if they have any Census 2013 queries they may want to contact you about or if you are selected for a survey following the Census. The number format is area code + number
What would people who only have a cellphone number and use 3g internet(no home line) write?

This is the case for naked DSL too; I have fixed broadband but no landline phone. I put my cellphone number and it was accepted.

1503 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 768545 24-Feb-2013 16:26

heavyusr: Completed mine online. Couple of questions I found may be problematic for some >

Number 39 lets you choose 'Work at Home' or 'Work away from Home'. Print full address of place you mostly worked at'
What is a plumber going to write? They have a base but most of their time is spent visiting different people's homes everyday



The guide notes say base - put that down, no base put "NO FIXED ADDRESS"

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  Reply # 768578 24-Feb-2013 19:19 Send private message

heavyusr: 
The notes say the Statistics Act 1975 makes it compulsory to fill out the census form but it doesn't say whether the followup survey is compulsory. Is it?
The notes say this about the followup survey:
- The Maori Social Survey is planned to begin in June 2013 and will involve face to face interviews with about 5,000 people
- The Household Disability Survey is planned to begin in July 2013 and will involve telephone and face to face interviews with about 20,000 people


Part 4 of the act covers this.  If Statistics NZ requests information from you, it is always compulsory.

Basically, if you get a survey from them you are legally required to complete it, and complete it correctly.

God help you if you get selected for the business surveys, which involve basically collating and giving them your accounts monthly.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 768587 24-Feb-2013 20:26 Send private message

so if we don't get a form we don't have to do it? 


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  Reply # 768588 24-Feb-2013 20:37 Send private message

mercutio: so if we don't get a form we don't have to do it? 



The census?  Yes, you still have to.  But if they don't send you any surveys afterwards then you don't have to do any surveys afterwards.

891 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 183


  Reply # 768592 24-Feb-2013 20:42 Send private message

mercutio: so if we don't get a form we don't have to do it? 



LOL!

You'll get it, though I only got mine today....

if you're in range of internet connection, or have a postal address, you're on their system to be served.

I guess an offshore boatie with 3G internet defies that logic, but other than that, you will get yours before March 5th, or your money back? :D




work Work  vs Home: Home 

*Sigh* price of country living I guess ;)

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