Australia's Bureau of Statistics says online census data is safe after a cyber attack on the survey website led to it being shut down. Natasha Howitt reports.
Australia's first online census was shut down on Wednesday after a cyber attack. The website was deliberately overloaded, authorities said, to stop the service from working. Australian Minister for Small Business, Michael McCormack... (SOUNDBITE) (English) AUSTRALIAN MINISTER FOR SMALL BUSINESS, MICHAEL MCCORMACK SAYING: "Data was never compromised, the ABS made a cautious decision to protect people's data. This was not an attack, nor was it a hack, it was an attempt to frustrate the collection of data, an attempt to frustrate the collection of data. People should feel, rest assured, that their data is safe. The census is a very important document to help with government decisions and I strongly encourage people to participate in the census when the site goes back online." Concerns about data security were widespread when it was decided to put the census online. Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull... (SOUNDBITE) AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER, MALCOLM TURNBULL SAYING: "And I want to assure Australians that the unequivocal advice we have received from IMB, from the Bureau of Statistics, from Australian Signals Directorate is that their Australian census data is safe, it has not been compromised. No data, the site has not been hacked, it has not been interfered with, the data is safe." The census provides a snapshot of the living conditions of Australia's 24 million people.