TN 2 (02-20)

GN 03316.130 Disclosure Without Consent for Research and Statistical Purposes

A. Disclosure policy

1. Statistical and research activities

We provide data to government agencies and private organizations for research projects and studies. Generally, disclosures to support external research activities are in the form of aggregations, statistics and or tabulations that do not identify any individual. We must review all statistical output prior to disclosure, to ensure the output meets our disclosure guidelines and will not lead to the identity of any individual or compromise the anonymity or privacy of an individual or family.

The Privacy Act allows us to disclose personally identifiable information subject to certain conditions and pursuant to a routine use. The Office of the General Counsel, via the Office of Data Exchange and Policy Publication (ODXIA), reviews requests to disclose SSA data for research purposes to determine if the disclosure is permissible.

2. Disclosure for SSA-approved research studies

In an effort to improve the quality of research designed to enhance the decision-making process in the Social Security program, we have routine uses that allow disclosure of information to entities and agencies such as Federal, State, or Congressional Support Agencies for certain research studies.

Many of our systems of records contain research routine uses. You can view a full listing of all of our systems of records and their routine uses at

B. Requests from external parties to use SSA data for research and statistical purposes

To request SSA data for research purposes, the requester must submit their request to ODXIA. ODXIA will coordinate the processing of the request amongst agency stakeholders to determine:

  • the feasibility and resource implications on the agency;

  • if the agency has authority to disclose the data sought;

  • if reimbursement is necessary; and

  • whether or not the requester can or does comply with Federal Information Security Systems requirements and will agree to our safeguarding and data security requirements, etc.

Once the appropriate components make a determination on the request, ODXIA will send a formal response to the requester.

To Link to this section - Use this URL:
GN 03316.130 - Disclosure Without Consent for Research and Statistical Purposes - 02/06/2020
Batch run: 02/06/2020