Confidentiality and Data Security

UK legislation allows us to collect and process your data to produce statistics for the public good. Your information will be treated as confidential as directed by the Code of Practice for Statistics. It will only be held for as long as it is being used for producing statistics. The statistics produced will not identify you or anyone in your household.

Processing of your personal data on the Crime Survey is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the Data Controller (ONS), with the objective of promoting and safeguarding the production and publication of official statistics that serve the public good.

In addition to survey data being used by the ONS to produce statistics, it is also provided to other government departments, approved organisations and approved researchers for statistical purposes only. Data provided for these purposes will never include details that can identify you. Details on who can access this information can be found at All statistics produced will be subject to the Code and the same standards of protection will be applied to your data at all times.

Is the information I give confidential?

Yes. The information you give us will be treated as confidential as directed by the Code of Practice for Statistics. It will be used to produce statistics that will not identify you or anyone in your household. All such statistics produced are subject to the Code and the same standards of protection are applied to your information at all times.

No individual will be identifiable from the results. Your answers will be combined with others that take part in the survey. You will not receive any ‘junk mail’ as a result of taking part.

Do I have to take part?

Our work is very important and we need your help to make our studies successful. Every year about 35,000 people help us by taking part in the survey. No-one has to take part if they do not want to, but for us to paint an accurate picture of our society, it is vital that we interview as many people as possible, from all walks of life and whether or not you have experienced any crime.

Data Linkage

The ONS collects a range of information about all of us for statistical purposes, for example, the 2021 Census data.

Data linkage is a technique for creating links between data sources so that information that is thought to relate to the same person, household, place or event can be connected for research purposes.

The Crime Survey data is collected with the aim of understanding the extent and nature of crime in England and Wales and to help ensure that government policies are in place to reduce this. Some of this can be done with the Crime Survey data alone and for other things, such as looking at the impact of certain crimes, data linkage is required.

Like your study responses, the additional information would be used for non-commercial research and statistics. Any sensitive information would only be made available under restricted access arrangements such as legally binding licences, which make sure that the information is used responsibly and safely. Names and addresses are strictly confidential and are not available to those using the data for statistical analysis. No individual can be identified from research findings.

Data Security

Verian abide by the following recognised standards:

  • The MRS and ESOMAR professional codes of conduct. This means we commit to uphold industry standards which are designed to satisfy legislation and promote high quality research
  • The ISO 20252: market research quality standard which has specific requirements for the handling of personal information
  • The ISO 9001: standard for quality management systems which stipulates conformity to regulatory requirements and a need for defined controls for the processing of records
  • The ISO 27001: standard for data security. The international standard for the management of information security *Verian only
  • Registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

Download our data security information leaflet here

Other Information
Our privacy policy