The Australian Bureau of Statistics
The PURPOSE OF ABS is to inform Australia's important decisions by partnering and innovating to deliver relevant, trusted, objective data, statistics and insights.
The ROLE OF ABS is Australia’s national statistical agency, providing trusted official statistics on a wide range of economic, social, population and environmental matters of importance to Australia.
providing the statistical information that Australia needs
responding to the changing information priorities of our stakeholders
enhancing the ways that we interact with our stakeholders
developing and maintaining community trust, which is fundamental to our ability to collect high quality information
enabling effective and safe use of our statistics
coordinating and advising official bodies on statistics, including developing, and ensuring compliance with, statistical standards
fulfilling our role as an Accredited Integrating Authority
building our capacity to take advantage of opportunities, such as advances in technology, big data, and use of administrative information for statistical purposes
ensuring cost-effect operations, including better utilising existing information, collecting information more efficiently, streamlining processes, and reducing the impact on those who provide statistical information.
All ECU researchers have access to the CURFS database.
If you need detailed ABS survey information, search within the ABS database for CURFS & register to use.
What is CURF microdata?
Microdata are the answers to individual questions on survey questionnaires.
Microdata are disclosed in the form of Confidentialised Unit Record Files (CURFs), which are files of responses to ABS surveys that have had specific identifying information about persons and organisations confidentialised.
Have you ever completed an ABS survey questionnaire? If so, your completed questionnaire is a 'unit record'. Your unit record and those of all respondents are then combined and confidentialised to form a CURF.
CURFs include the most detailed information available from the ABS.
The ABS takes its responsibilities to protect the confidentiality of individuals' and organisations' data very seriously. This is fundamental to the trust the Australian public has in the ABS, and that trust is, in turn, fundamental to the excellent quality of ABS information. Without that trust, survey respondents may be less forthcoming or truthful in answering our questionnaires.
The most basic of the techniques employed by the ABS involves removing all identifying information, such as names and addresses.
Additionally, the data items that are most likely to enable identification of unit records are only released in broad categories. For example, while survey questionnaires may capture your home or business address, microdata may only be released at the State or Territory level.
More advanced confidentialisation occurs through checking the CURFs for records with uncommon combinations of responses. These records may be altered slightly to ensure individual respondents cannot be identified.
For more information, see 'Avoiding Inadvertent Disclosure' and 'Microdata' on our web page How the ABS keeps your information confidential.
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Trove is many things: a community, a set of services, an aggregation of metadata, and a growing repository of fulltext digital resources.