Data Collection System

[Background] [Industry Stratification] [Administration] [Access to DCS]

Data Collection – Guide


The Commission, in various regulations, decisions, orders and notices, introduced requirements on the Canadian broadcasting and telecommunications industries to help fulfill its mandates under the Broadcasting Act and the Telecommunications Act. Some of these requirements involve the filing of data to the Commission on a regular basis.

To reduce the regulatory burden on the industry, the Commission introduced its web-based Data Collection System (DCS) in January 2004. DCS employs a secure, encrypted connection between the entity submitting data and the Commission thereby improving the accuracy and timeliness of the data submitted.

Statistics Canada also collects information from broadcasting and telecommunications services industries to produce national and regional estimates of activity for these industries. These estimates become an integral part of our national and provincial economic accounts.

In order to avoid duplication, minimize response burden, make more efficient use of resources and promote coherence of the Canadian statistical system, the Commission and Statistics Canada have agreed to integrate the requirements of both organizations for industry and market statistics into this data collection. As a result, Statistics Canada will no longer conduct separate Annual Survey of Telecommunications and Annual Survey of Internet Service Providers.

Industry Stratification

While the long-term goal is to have all Canadian broadcasting and telecommunications entities file their data electronically using DCS, presently, data is still collected using paper forms from smaller telecommunications entities. The industries are currently stratified as follows:


For the period ended 31 August, the Commission will be collecting data electronically from all ownership groups. The licensees in these ownership groups will be contacted separately and asked to submit their Radio, TV and Pay & Specialty data via DCS.


In order to reduce the reporting burden on smaller companies the telecommunications industry has been stratified into two broad groups, distinguished by their operational activities. The full description of this stratification is set out in Telecom Circular CRTC 2005-4.

Group 1

This group is required to file its data electronically using DCS and is made up of telecommunications entities that meet one or more of the following criterion:

  • they have significant Canadian telecommunications revenues;
  • they file a CRTC telecommunications tariff;
  • they hold a basic international telecommunications licence (BITS);
  • they are affiliated to entities with consolidated telecommunications revenues in excess of $10 million; and
  • they are subject to any other electronic data collection forms in the Commission's web-based Data Collection System (DCS).

Group 2

This group is made up of those entities that do not meet at least one Group 1 inclusion criterion. These entities are required to submit a simplified paper Registration form that will be mailed to them. A blank Group 2 Registration form is available here.

Blank Group 2 Registration forms can be found by clicking on the “Surveys” link located on the side navigation bar.


All reporting entities must nominate a Response Manager to be the single-point-of-contact for the Commission who is responsible for managing the form completion process. Details of how to appoint or change a Response Manager can be found under Contact located on the side navigation bar.

Access to DCS

The following gives a brief overview of how to access DCS. Please consult the Industry Stratification section for guidance on whether a particular entity should report its data using DCS or via a paper Registration Form.

Secure Access through My CRTC Account

DCS uses My CRTC Account to help you communicate securely with online Government services via a user ID and password. Thus, all users are required to establish a My CRTC Account. Accounts will expire 24 months after the last use.

If you are first-time user, please refer to the instructions for submitting documents using My CRTC Account.


Anyone with possession of a My CRTC Account user ID and password will have the means to view the entity's data. It is therefore up to the entity to ensure My CRTC Account is managed responsibly. If the entity has any reason to believe that the security of My CRTC Account has been compromised, please contact the Commission and the user's account will be suspended until new contact details can be implemented.

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