More from the Registrar General

Dear Miss __

Thanks for your speedy reply.  There’s one point where you have I think misunderstood the position.  As a public body, my department is required to follow EU procurement rules which are different from those applying to “the business world” and which have the effect I mention in my earlier email.

The answers to your questions are:

  • the census involves you providing information to me and my representatives (notably the enumerators who are delivering the questionnaires just now), not to CACI (UK) Ltd;
  • it’s a legal requirement under the Census (Scotland) Order 2010, which was passed unanimously by the Scottish Parliament last spring, to provide accurate information for the census.  That reflects the national importance of the information collected by the census, which is widely used, for instance in the ways I mentioned in my earlier email.  The penalty for non-compliance is a fine of up to £1,000.  But the last thing I want to do is report people to the Procurator Fiscal: I seek only a completed census questionnaire.
  • CACI (UK) Ltd’s role is to process the information collected in the census.  They certainly cannot retain it, or remove it from the processing site.  We have taken great care to ensure that the information is kept confidential, and that includes contractual and technical measures to protect it from that kind of action, which is illegal under the Census (Confidentiality) Act 1991.

Yours sincerely

Duncan Macniven
Registrar General for Scotland
General Register Office for Scotland

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