4530.0.55.002 - Microdata: Crime Victimisation, Australia, 2010-11 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/05/2013  First Issue
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TableBuilder files are released in accordance with the conditions specified in the Statistics Determination section of the Census and Statistics Act 1905 (CSA). This ensures that confidentiality is maintained whilst enabling micro level data to be released. More information on the confidentiality practices associated with TableBuilder can be found at the Confidentiality page.

For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


Data on Crime Victimisation were collected as part of the 2010–11 Multipurpose Household Survey (MPHS). The MPHS is a supplement to the monthly Labour Force Survey (LFS) and is designed to collect annual statistics on a small number of self-contained topics. The scope of the LFS is restricted to people aged 15 years and over and excludes members of the permanent defence forces; certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments usually excluded from census and estimated resident populations; overseas residents in Australia; and members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants). Refer to Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0) for further information regarding the LFS. In addition, the 2010–11 MPHS excluded people living in very remote parts of Australia and people living in non-private dwellings such as hotels, university residences, students at boarding schools, patients in hospitals, inmates of prisons and residents of other institutions (e.g. retirement homes, homes for persons with disabilities).

Microdata from the Crime Victimisation component of the MPHS are available in TableBuilder. Respondents aged 15 years and over (or 18 years and over for incidents of sexual assault) were asked questions about their experiences of crime victimisation. The type of information collected included their experience of selected personal crimes (physical assault, threatened assault, robbery and sexual assault), selected household crimes (break-ins, attempted break-ins, motor vehicle theft, theft from a motor vehicle, malicious property damage and other theft) and perceptions of social disorder in their local area. In the Fraud component of the MPHS, respondents aged 15 years and over were asked questions about their experiences of types of personal fraud. The type of information collected included their experience of identity fraud (credit or bank card fraud and identity theft) and scams (lotteries, pyramid schemes, chain letters, fake notifications received from banks, financial institutions or businesses, requests to send financial information to another person, and other scams). Information was collected from one person selected at random in each selected household.

The 2010-11 Personal Fraud Survey provides an indication of change from the 2007 Personal Fraud Survey. Personal and consumer frauds are thought to be a fast expanding and evolving area of crime, and these surveys have been run to provide an indication of the prevalence of this issue in Australia and whether or not this is changing over time. Input into the development and funding of the 2007 Personal Fraud Survey was provided by most members of the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce (ACFT).

For more information, see Microdata: Crime Victimisation, Australia, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4530.0.55.002).


The MPHS is collected annually with enumeration undertaken over the financial year period from July to June. The Crime Victimisation topic is collected annually via the MPHS with the first of the series collected in 2008–09. As the survey reference period was the 12 months prior to the survey interview during 2010–11 (except for identity theft), the data relate to crimes or personal fraud occurring at some time between July 2009 and June 2011. Data from the Crime Victimisation topic (in the form of html and data cubes) were released on 21 February 2012. Data from the Personal Fraud topic (in the form of html and data cubes) were released on 19 April 2012. The microdata product is released approximately 12 months after enumeration is completed.


The microdata contains finer levels of detail of data items than what is otherwise published in other formats, for example, in Crime Victimisation, Australia, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4530.0) or Personal Fraud, Australia, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4528.0). For more information on the level of detail provided, please see the associated data item lists.

Steps to confidentialise the data made available on TableBuilder are taken in such a way as to maximise the usefulness of the content while maintaining the confidentiality of respondents selected in the survey. As a result it may not be possible to exactly reconcile all the statistics produced from the microdata with other published statistics. Further information about the steps taken to confidentialise the microdata is available through the following link:

TableBuilder confidentiality


Crime Victimisation

The ABS conducted National Crime and Safety Surveys in 1975, 1983, 1993, 1998, 2002 and 2005. In 2006–07, a review of these crime surveys found the need for more timely and regular crime victimisation headline indicators (on an annual basis), and the need for flexibility to cater for new and emerging areas of crime.

In 2008–09, a redesigned ABS Crime Victimisation Survey was conducted (via the MPHS) which sought information on people's experiences as victims of both personal and household crimes. In addition, a module seeking information on people's feelings of safety in particular situations was also included. This survey was largely repeated for both 2009–10 and 2010–11 although a social disorder module replaced the feelings of safety module. For 2009–10 and 2010–11, data for all but the social disorder module can be directly compared with 2008–09 data.

In 2010–11, for the first time victims of physical assault and face-to-face threatened assault aged 15 and over who were personally interviewed were asked whether they believed alcohol or any other substance contributed to their most recent incident of assault (see Data Collection section of the Explanatory Notes for more information).

Differences in survey methodology and enumeration periods, as well as changes to many of the questions being asked, means that data from the 2008–09, 2009–10 and 2010–11 Crime Victimisation Surveys are not comparable with earlier ABS crime surveys. These differences mean that a time series is only possible for the period 2008–09 and beyond.

Consistent with the findings of the review of ABS crime surveys, the national Crime Victimisation Survey is expected to be conducted annually from 2008–09 using the MPHS.

The terms used to describe the various types of offences in this publication may not necessarily correspond with legal or police definitions.

Personal Fraud

This is the second time that national data about personal fraud has been collected, with the first Personal Fraud Survey being conducted in 2007.

There have been a number of changes from the 2007 Personal Fraud survey which have affected the comparability of some data items from the 2010-11 survey with data from the 2007 survey.

The 2007 survey was conducted over a six month period from July to December whereas the 2010-11 survey was conducted over 12 months. Care should be taken when comparing estimates relating to the last 12 months prior to interview, as seasonal factors may have influenced the rate or nature of fraud perpetration between January and June and the impacts of this were not able to be quantified.

Due to the relatively low prevalence of identity theft, details have been collected about incidents of identity theft that respondents became aware of in the last 5 years prior to interview in 2010-11, compared to the last 12 months prior to interview in 2007. The 2010-11 data describing characteristics of victims of identity theft relate to incidents in the last 12 months only and is comparable to similar tables in the 2007 publication.

Some of the types of selected scams included in 2010-11 differ from those in 2007 and it is not recommended to directly compare categories. While the categories of 'lotteries', 'pyramid schemes', and 'chain letters' are similar, the question wording changed from the wording used in 2007. 'Phishing' (a fraudulent request, purporting to be from a business or bank, to confirm a person’s bank account or personal details) was included in 2007, but has been incorporated into the following new categories: 'a fake notification or offer from a bank or other financial institution' and 'a fake notification or offer from an established business'. 'Advance fee fraud' (an unsolicited request to transfer funds into a person's bank account in return for a commission or fee) was also included in 2007. The 2011 category, 'requests to send bank or financial details to another person' is similar, but the question asked did not specify 'in return for a commission or fee', which was an element of the definition of Advance fee fraud in 2007. The 2007 category 'financial advice' is included in 'other scams' in 2010-11.

Information about characteristics of incidents of personal fraud are not comparable across the two reference periods. In 2007, detailed characteristics were collected about the most recent incident of each type of fraud. The 2010-11 survey collected detailed characteristics about all incidents in the last 12 months for each fraud type.

Information about financial loss related to the total loss for all incidents of each type of fraud in the last 12 months in both 2007 and 2010-11.

The terms used to describe the various types of offences in this publication may not necessarily correspond with legal or police definitions.


The information within this product should be referred to when using the microdata. It contains information including Survey methodology, File structure, Using the TableBuilder, Conditions of use and the Data item lists.

The Explanatory Notes section of the Crime Victimisation, Australia, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4530.0) and Personal Fraud, Australia, 2010–11 (cat. no. 4528.0) includes information on survey objectives, survey methods and design, data quality and interpretation, output data items, information about the availability of results and comparability with previous surveys.


Microdata products are available to approved users. Users wishing to access the microdata should read the How to apply for Microdata web page, before applying for access through MiCRO. Users should also familiarise themselves with information available via the Microdata web pages.

A full list of available microdata can be viewed via the List of expected and available Microdata.

Crime Victimisation, 2010–11 can be accessed using TableBuilder.

Any questions regarding access to microdata can be forwarded to microdata.access@abs.gov.au or phone (02) 6252 7714.