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ONS publishes principles of how its data is collected, used and protected

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) yesterday published a summary of the principles that underpin how data is collected, kept and used within ONS, how it publishes the aggregate statistics produced from the data it collects, and how ONS supports accredited researchers using that data to inform their research.

“Data is the essential ingredient for the work of the Office for National Statistics, and it is important that we are transparent about how we collect data, what we do with it, and how we keep it safe and secure” says Heather Savory, Deputy National Statistician.

The principles cover ONS’s commitment to use data for statistical and research purposes only and to publish the statistics it produces openly online, available free of charge to all.

ONS also supports approved researchers to achieve public benefit from data through additional research projects. ONS has published updated guidance for approved researchers, following a public consultation undertaken last year and is strengthening the transparency of the scheme to include a published record of all researchers who are accredited and links to their published research.

All approved researchers must continue to comply with the strict and extensive controls designed to ensure data security. There is a criminal penalty of up to two years’ imprisonment for anyone found to be misusing confidential personal information.

For more about how ONS protects data, go to:

For details on the Approved Researcher scheme and criteria go to:

Media contact: Helena Hird Tel: 0845 604 1858

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