FAQ – Annual Telecommunications Survey

Why are the CRTC and Statistics Canada conducting a joint survey?

In order to avoid duplication, minimize response burden on the industry, 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.

What is the authority to conduct this survey?

This survey is conducted under the authority of the Statistics Act, Revised Statutes of Canada 1985, Chapter S-19, the Telecommunications Act, Section 37 and the Broadcasting Act. The Telecommunication Act applies for all forms, the Statistics Act and the Broadcasting Act for a sub-set of forms. Each form indicates the authority or authorities that apply.

Why is this survey being undertaken?

The survey serves statistical as well as monitoring purposes and is necessary for Statistics Canada and the CRTC to fulfill their mandate as set out in their respective Acts.

Statistics Canada will use selected data from the survey to produce national and regional estimates of activity in telecommunications services industries. These estimates are an integral part of our national and provincial economic accounts.

The information gathered by the survey enables the Commission to determine more effectively (a) the state of competition in telecommunication markets, (b) the effect of competition on services to consumers and business customers, and (c) service providers' compliance with legal and regulatory requirements.

In addition, estimates from the survey are used to report to international organizations such as the OECD and the ITU and are an authoritative source of information on the Canadian telecommunications industry for use by all stakeholders, including interested government departments, the private sector, academics, analysts and the general public.

Is the data provided by my organization confidential?

All forms in DCS indicate under which authority the industry data is being collected and that different rules regarding the confidentiality of data will apply depending on the applicable authority under which the data is being collected.

For data collected under the authority of the Telecommunications Act, the provisions of Telecom Circular CRTC 2005-4 will continue to apply.

For data collected under the authority of the Statistics Act, Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from publishing or releasing any statistics which would divulge information obtained from this survey relating to any identifiable business without the previous written consent of that business. The data from this survey will be treated in confidence, used for statistical purposes and published in aggregate form only. The confidentiality provisions of the Statistics Act are not affected by the Access to Information Act or any other legislation.

Will the information be shared with any other organizations?

The information collected is kept confidential pursuant to the Telecommunications Act. It is the policy of Statistics Canada to provide all respondents with information about data sharing agreements. Please click here for this information regarding the Annual Survey of Telecommunications.

Do ISPs have to participate, too?

Yes. The CRTC has forborne from regulating most aspects of the Internet. It is important that the CRTC measure competition in the Internet market. This measurement is an important part of ensuring that the CRTC fulfils its responsibilities.

Local, short-haul, or long-haul?

Local network segments are those that connect between a service provider's point of presence, at one end of the network segment, and the customer premise, on the other.

Short-haul segments are considered backbone segments, because they connect between service provider points of presence at either end. They remain intra-city - both ends are in the same municipality, adjacent municipalities, or the same metropolitan area.

Long-haul network segments are also backbone segments; they, too, connect between service provider points of presence. The difference, however, is that they are inter-city segments. The two ends are in different, non-adjacent municipalities.

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