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US Census is Confidential by Law, or so they say

here is the faq on how the us census bureau says it treats our info with confidentiality. it says they do not disclose anything personally identifiable we tell them on the forms, to any other government agency, or any other person.
Here is the FAQ from the US Census website, about confidentiality. So if you are wondering if they share private personal info, they say they can't. I suppose that if they did, you could sue them.

One wonders though, just how far we can really trust them on their word, because as we all know, Big Brother is watching. I would think that the census is a huge opportunity for Bro, as in Patriot Act and post- 911 Homeland Security universal surveillance goals and objectives, to collect info on people . And what would really stop them from lying to us about it to get us to do what they want?
The part about how they use GPS, google earth style, to first locate aerial views of, then map out, every single building, is really unnerving. That's when the phrase "Big Brother is watching" really spoke to me in my mind. Freeeeeeaky.

Here is their FAQ:

How is my information protected?

All Census Bureau employees take the oath of nondisclosure and are sworn for life to protect the confidentiality of the data. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents' answers with anyone, including the IRS, FBI, CIA or any other government agency.

Can my neighbor see my information?

No. Individual census records are not shared with anyone, including other federal agencies and law enforcement entities. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents' answers with anyone, -- not the IRS, not the FBI, not the CIA, and not with any other government agency. The penalty for unlawful disclosure is a fine of up to $250,000 or imprisonment of up to 5 years, or both.

How can I keep my information safe?

The easiest way to keep your information safe is to fill out your census form and mail it back right away. Also, look for identification from census takers and remember that the Census Bureau will NEVER ask for any information to be submitted online.

What steps are taken if my information is compromised?

A determination of the sensitivity of the information and the specific details associated with incidents determines the action the Census Bureau takes. Actions range from sending notification letters to providing credit-monitoring services. All incidents are reviewed and Census Bureau senior management receives regular status reports on the incidents.

Why is the Census Bureau using Global Positioning Systems (GPS)?

The Census Bureau uses Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to help locate addresses. A handheld computer is equipped with GPS and is used during our address canvassing operation. Address canvassing is a field operation where census workers systematically travel all known and new streets and roads to identify every structure where people live or could potentially live and update our address list and maps. For the 2010 Census, we attempted to collect GPS coordinates for each structure to make sure it is recorded in the correct location. The census workers also confirmed, added and deleted addresses using a GPS-equipped handheld computer. All this work was done to ensure a complete and accurate address list for delivering the 2010 Census questionnaires next year.

Are the GPS coordinates collected during the 2010 Census operation kept confidential?

Yes. All address information, including GPS coordinates, is protected by the confidentiality requirements of Title 13 of the United States Code. All Census Bureau employees take an oath for life to protect identifiable information about individuals and businesses gathered by the agency. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents' answers with the IRS, FBI, CIA or any other government agency. The penalty for unlawful disclosure is a fine of up to $250,000 or imprisonment of up to 5 years, or both.

HERE'S THE FAQ LINK:  http://2010.census.gov/2010census/privacy/common-privacy-questions.php

HERE'S THEIR MAIN PAGE:  http://2010.census.gov/2010census/index.php

the problem is... 07.Apr.2010 14:15

nadya hedd

... i just found out that the census is being perpetrated by IBM on contract with the gov't, and IBM is now owned by the Chinese. So, how on earth are we guaranteed any kind of real confidentiality? and why is our most private info going to the Chinese? I would think that this is a major threat to our national security. They will now have all our social security numbers, and know all our global positions on the map, etc etc. And the census is being carried out by the DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE. No wonder reads like a market survey, only ten times as invasive. This may not be shared with other governmental departments ;) but it is surely being shared with a foreign government, and a huge multinational / foreign corporation that also did the very same type of thing for Nazi Germany.