2020 brings a presidential election and the census to the United States. One has gotten a little more press than the other. This interesting topic came to us from Government CIO Media in their article, “Data Drives the First Digital Census.”

The 2020 census is the largest data collection ever in U.S. history. The Constitution mandates the census every decade. It affects appropriations of funds for communities and how each community is represented in Congress. This is important stuff.

The data and IT landscape is drastically different than it was a decade ago. The Census Bureau has already collected data from the U.S. Postal Service and over 40,000 local governments to help establish what addresses have changed. For the first time, the bureau also has GPS data for every address, and while it keeps that data secure on an individual basis, it will add geospatial data to the aggregate results.

This will also be the first census where households can respond to the census online or by making a phone call, rather than filling out paper forms and filling it in.

Obviously this means all eyes are focused on data security. One of many steps towards keeping the data secure is to use automation to collect responses in centralized nodes to minimize the time individual responses stay on mobile devices. There are many others.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.