The data protocol begins with the fact that no case identifying confidential party information is ever transmitted to DRD. This includes the parties’ names, the names of the advocates, nor the names of the arbitrator(s) or mediator. The name of the institution is also not publicly associated with its own data.
Additionally, the data which is sent to DRD is maintained on secured servers using the best industry standards for authentication and encryption. In order to maintain the anonymity of individual case data in our database, we use standard statistical disclosure control methods. These techniques were developed first for the U.S. Census Bureau to ensure that individual respondents could not be identified in the publicly released data. These methods involve systematically obfuscating the individual data records, so that a particular case is not identifiable, but aggregate statistical results using the modified data are consistent with the original data and, therefore, produce valid statistical inferences.
Dr. Jonathan N. Katz, who assisted DRD in the development of its data protocol, statistical disclosure controls, and currency conversions, is the Kay Sugahara Professor of Social Sciences and Statistics at the California Institute of Technology.