CBS collects as much information as possible from existing government and business registries. The use of this information is regulated by law, with top priority given to privacy and reliability. Additionally, CBS collects data through its own surveys. New sources such as big data also play an increasing role in forming the basis for statistics.
The Statistics Netherlands Act of 1996 stipulated that CBS is required to reduce the administrative burden (of survey taking) to a minimum and permitted CBS to access key government registers for statistical purposes. Wherever possible, CBS has therefore switched from sample surveys among individuals and enterprises to data collection using administrative sources from other government organisations.