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The U.S. Census Bureau is committed to protecting the confidentiality of all the data it collects.

The Census Bureau is bound by the provisions of Title 13, United States Code, Section 301(g) to protect the confidentiality of the export data it collects and make the information available only when the Secretary of Commerce's delegate, the Director of the Census Bureau, determines that withholding of information would be contrary to the national interest. Such determination is conditioned on the recipient agency implementing appropriate data safeguards and agreeing to use such data solely for the purposes authorized by the Census Bureau Director. Typically these purposes are either statistical or for enforcing U.S. export laws and regulations. The regulatory provisions regarding the confidentiality of export information are found in Title 15, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 30, Section 30.60. Additionally, all employees of the Census Bureau are prohibited from disclosing confidential information under the provisions of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1905. Violations may result in the imposition of penalties up to $250,000 or imprisonment and removal from employment.

Information detailing the names of importers, shippers, consignees and other manifest data is not released by the Census Bureau. Manifest data are collected and disclosed by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in accordance with Title 19, United States Code. Section 103.31(a) allows accredited representatives of the press collect manifest data at every port of entry. Reporters may collect and publish names of importers and shippers from vessel manifest data unless an importer, shipper, or consignees requests confidentiality in accordance with Section 103(d).

A request for confidentiality may be made for two years and must be made in writing to the Privacy Branch 799 Ninth St., N.W. Fifth Floor Mint Annex, Washington, DC 20229. After two years, the request can be renewed. For further information about the release of manifest data, contact the CBP's Privacy Act Policy and Procedures Branch at 202-325-0280 or the Office of Trade Relations at 202-344-1440 or

For further information regarding published trade data please contact the U.S. Census Bureau, Foreign Trade Division at: 1-800-549-0595, option 4,, or e-mail


Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Foreign Trade | |  Last Revised: March 11, 2015