Minimizing Disclosure Risk in HHS Open Data Initiatives. 7. Proposed Statistical Policy Directive from OMB


On May 21, 2014, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in OMB published a Proposed Statistical Policy Directive that “provides a unified articulation of federal statistical agency responsibilities” (OMB 2014). The directive lists four responsibilities of federal statistical agencies:

  1. Produce and disseminate relevant and timely information
  2. Conduct credible and accurate statistical activities
  3. Conduct objective statistical activities
  4. Protect the trust of information providers by ensuring the confidentiality of their responses

On this last item the directive underscores the importance of maintaining a consistent level of protection as a way of reducing respondents’ confusion, uncertainty, and concern about the use of the information they report. Statistical agencies are reminded that they must “follow best practices for protecting the confidentiality of (their) data.”

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