How can I assess and manage the sensitivity of data before sharing on HDX?

The OCHA Data Responsibility Guidelines (‘the Guidelines’) helps staff better assess and manage the sensitivity of the data they handle in different crisis contexts. We recommend that HDX users familiarize themselves with the Guidelines.

Different data can have different levels of sensitivity depending on the context. For example, locations of medical facilities in conflict settings can expose patients and staff to risk of attacks, whereas the same facility location data would likely not be considered sensitive in a natural disaster setting.

Recognizing this complexity, the Guidelines include an Information and Data Sensitivity Classification model to help colleagues assess and manage sensitivity in a standardized way.

For microdata (survey and needs-assessment data), you can manage the sensitivity level by applying a Statistical Disclosure Control (SDC) process. There are several tools available online to do SDC – we use sdcMicro.

The Centre has developed a Guidance Note on Statistical Disclosure Control that outlines the steps involved in the SDC process, potential applications for its use, case studies and key actions for humanitarian data practitioners to take when managing sensitive microdata.