Data protection description 14 November 2022: Survey on income and living conditions

The survey on income and living conditions (formerly income distribution statistics) collects data on Finnish households' income and living conditions. The survey collects data about, for example, the structure of households, the activities of the household members during the year, housing and housing costs, loans, economic livelihood and health.

The data of the survey on income and living conditions are used in the income distribution statistics and the statistics on living conditions. The statistics and research data compiled based on the survey are used to monitor and analyse households' economic livelihood and living conditions in public administration, organisations, research institutes and business life, both in Finland and abroad, particularly in EU countries. In addition, the data are used in the joint European microsimulation model EUROMOD.

1. Controller and contact persons

Statistics Finland

Postal address: FI-00022 STATISTICS FINLAND

Street address: Työpajankatu 13, Helsinki

Telephone: +358 29 551 1000 (switchboard)

Contact person: Kaisa-Mari Okkonen tel. +358 29 551 3408


2. Person responsible for data protection

Person responsible for data protection: Elina Tavast

Telephone: +358 29 551 1000 (switchboard)


3. Purpose and legal basis for the processing of personal data

Primary purpose: The purpose of use of personal data is to compile statistics describing social conditions in accordance with Section 2 of the Statistics Finland Act (48/1992) and to manage samples of individual-based and household-based surveys. Statistics on income and living conditions are compiled from the data and the data are delivered to Eurostat (EU-SILC). The survey on income and living conditions is carried out based on the Framework Regulation on social statistics IESS (EU) 2019/1700 and the Delegated Regulation supplementing it by establishing a multiannual rolling planning (EU) 2020/256, as well as on Implementing Regulations (EU) 2019/2180 and (EU) 2019/2181, and on Implemented Regulations (for example, (EU) 2019/2242) specifically concerning EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions EU-SILC.

In addition, the data of the register can be used to compile other statistics within Statistics Finland's field of operation and for this purpose be combined with data from other registers. Data may be processed and combined with other data in scientific research or statistical surveys on social conditions.

Statistics Finland also uses the data to develop statistics production and may publish data as experimental statistics. In addition, the data are used to administer prizes to those participating in the survey.

Personal data are processed in accordance with Article 6(1)(c) of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, the controller’s legal obligation, to the extent data are obtained from other authorities' registers and on the basis of subsection (e) for the purpose of performing a task in the public interest to the extent data are collected directly from the data subject. Personal data belonging to special personal data groups are processed based on Section 6, Paragraph 7 of the Data Protection Act (1050/2018).

4. Storage period of personal data

The completed statistical data are stored permanently in electronic format in accordance with the decision of the National Archives of Finland.

The data stored do not include the information enabling direct identification of respondents needed in the implementation stage of the data collection (name, address and other contact information). They are destroyed within three years from the end of the data collection.

5. Personal data processed

Sample statistics, number: The gross sample size varies yearly, usually around 12,500 households. The survey on income and living conditions is a panel survey where the same respondents are contacted in four successive years always in spring.

Selection principles: Two-phase stratified sampling from the Population Register. The households are private households permanently resident in Finland, i.e., the so-called household population. We do not try to reach households living permanently abroad (for over a year), with no address and institutional population (such as long-term residents of old-age homes, care institutions, prisons or hospitals).

Identification data: Personal identity code, interview target number. Name, telephone, address and email address are used only at the data collection stage, including possible administration of prizes to survey participants.

Special personal data groups: Data on social assistance and trade union membership, as well as various data describing state of health and treatment measures, as well as data describing social welfare services, support and needs, and data on the marital status of persons related to the formation of a household.

Other data or data group: Demographic data, data on the household's income, housing, debts, state of health and living conditions. Some of the data are change annually depending on the content of the EU-SILC modules. A more detailed description of the data collection and data content is given on Statistics Finland’s data collection pages

6. Regular data sources

Register controller and register

The Population Information System of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency and Statistics Finland’s database on the population in Finland

The Tax Administration's tax database

The Social Insurance Institution of Finland's registers of pension insurance, health insurance compensation and rehabilitation, registers of child maintenance allowances, financial aid for students and housing allowances

Data on preventive and supplementary income support collected by the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) from municipalities

The register of pension contingency of the Finnish Centre for Pensions

Statistics Finland’s Register of Completed Education and Degrees

The State Treasury's database on the military injuries indemnity system

The Financial Supervision Authority’s earnings-related unemployment allowances

The data warehouse for early childhood education (VARDA)

Statistics Finland's Business Register

The Employment Fund’s (formerly the Education Fund) data

Own notification of data subjects

Data collected directly from data subjects in the data collection for the survey on income and living conditions

Acquisition of data

Telephone interview, web form or face-to-face interview. Online responding has been possible for one-person households since 2022. Starting from 2023, online responding is possible for all one-person households and also for larger households in the continuing survey rounds.

7. Disclosure of data

As a rule, personal data are not released in identifiable form to outsiders. A user licence can be granted in individual cases for scientific research or statistical surveys so that data enabling direct identification have been removed.

8. Data transfer outside the EU or EEA countries

As a rule, Statistics Finland does not transfer personal data outside the EU or the EEA area or to international organisations. With a user licence, data can be processed via the remote access system also in those countries outside the EU, whose level of data protection has been determined to be adequate by the European Commission’s decision. A list of these countries is published in the Official Journal of the European Union and on the website of the European Commission.

9. Automatic decision-making

Personal data are not used for automatic decision-making.

10. Rights of data subjects

Information about the rights of data subjects can be found on Statistics Finland’s website

11. Right to appeal to the supervisory authority

If you think your personal data are processed unlawfully, you can submit a complaint to the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman.

Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman

Street address Lintulahdenkuja 4, FI-00530 Helsinki

Postal address: P.O.Box 800, FI-00530 Helsinki

Email tietosuoja(at)

Switchboard +358 29 566 6700

Registrar's Office +358 29 566 6768

Further information about submitting a complaint is available on the website of the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman at

12. Other information

Statistics Finland is responsible for the publication of this data protection description