The Census Bureau is spending nearly $5 billion to strengthen technology ahead of the 2020 elections. The Government Accountability Office (GAP) reported on April 30, 2019, “The census faces “significant cybersecurity risks” and “funding constraints have caused key tests to be delayed or canceled.”
Atri Kalluri, who ran the US Census Bureau’s Decennial IT Division, moved on April 14 2019 to a new role managing data security. Mr Kalluri now oversees “definition and implementation of policies” for “response security and data integrity.”
Data derived from the survey are used to allocate seats in the US Congress and to direct the federal government’s allocation of trillions of dollars of aid each decade.
The GAO also noted “deeper organizational issues” and “skills gaps,” pointing to a Census office where 15 of 44 positions remain vacant.
Aside from potentially exposing data, a hack or IT mishap could force more of the census to be done through in-person door-knocking, a costlier and less accurate method.