Tuesday, 27 October 2020 18:36

Census to be given test run by 100,000 households on Tuesday night Featured

Census to be given test run by 100,000 households on Tuesday night Image by Eak K. from Pixabay

A total of 100,000 households will test out the infrastructure for next year's Australian census on Tuesday night, the Australian Bureau of Statistics says.

ABS Census executive director and national spokesperson Andrew Henderson said the selected households would play an important role in helping the ABS prepare for next year's count.

The test is being run in areas of Sydney, Adelaide, Darwin, Canberra, Warrnambool, Karratha, Alice Springs Town Camps and the community of Amoonguna.

The last census, in August 2016, was supposed to be held mostly online, but the website was taken offline at 7.30pm following what was claimed to be a distributed denial of service attack. This claim was later disputed.

Both the ABS and IBM, which received a $9.6 million contract to run the census, were blamed for the debacle.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia has built the site for the 2021 census and it will be hosted on Amazon Web Services. Recruitment company The Adecco Group will deliver key services.

At the time this was announced, the ABS said it and PwC Australia would work with the Australian Cyber Security Centre and the Digital Transformation Agency to manage the high demand anticipated for the 2021 event.

Of Tuesday's test, Henderson said: “This is the biggest test we’ll do before the next census. While it’s voluntary, it’s important people participate to make sure it is easy for people to complete, our processes work and the census form captures information accurately.

“If you’re one of the 100,000 households that have been invited to take part and haven’t yet completed your form, please do it online or on paper and include everyone in your house tonight.

“If you need help, please get in touch through our website or contact centre.

“You can also still do the test in the next few days. You may receive a reminder letter from us, or in some areas we might visit to leave you a reminder.

“Thank you for helping us make sure the next census runs as smoothly as possible.

“The success of the census relies on the community. In turn, it produces critical data to help build a better future for everyone.”

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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