A privacy impact assessment is an evaluation process which allows Statistics Canada to assess and evaluate privacy, confidentiality or security risks associated with the collection, use or disclosure of personal information, and to develop measures intended to mitigate and, wherever possible, eliminate identified risks.
Statistics Canada's commitment to keep in trust the information it obtains from the Canadian public is enshrined in both the Statistics Act and the Agency's various policies and practices that frame its data collection, analysis and dissemination activities.
Given its unique position in the federal government in collecting personal information solely for statistical and research purposes, Statistics Canada has determined that the privacy issues associated with its survey activities could be addressed by means of a generic privacy impact assessment that would address the majority of survey collections undertaken by the Agency under the authority of the Statistics Act.
Nevertheless, in accordance with its Privacy Impact Assessment Policy, Statistics Canada will conduct privacy impact assessments for all new and significantly redesigned surveys and programs involving the collection, use or disclosure of personal information that raise unique or additional privacy, confidentiality or security risks. As part of this process, preliminary privacy impact assessments are conducted to determine the need for a full privacy impact assessment.
The following are summaries of privacy impact assessments and preliminary privacy impact assessments that Statistics Canada has completed to date: