Linkage and Security

Linkage and Security


The PHRN has been developing a robust data information security program designed to offer the highest level of protection to data involved in linkage and research.

Information security controls used by the PHRN's Data Linkage Units (DLUs) can be divided into four key categories:

Physical Security - DLUs must ensure strict security barriers and entry controls are in place at all locations where data records are stored

IT Security - Stand-alone networks, firewalls, password protection, anti-viral software and encryption for data transfer must be standard practice at all PHRN DLUs

Personnel Security - access to data limited to those personnel whose work responsibilities specifically require it

Administrative Security - extensive work has been completed on a range of approved written policies, procedures, standards, guidelines, security training, and risk assessments that will help guide the ongoing security management of all PHRN DLUs. External reviews have also been completed.

There are a number of security measures also undertaken to ensure the data remains safe once provided to the approved researchers. These include:

  • approval of security plans from Human Research Ethics Committees and data custodians
  • legally binding contracts and confidentiality agreements with data custodians
  • successful completion of compulsory online researcher training covering privacy and security
  • receipt of data from custodians in encrypted format, or access via a dedicated secure access environment

Secure Data Access

Data can be stored, accessed and analysed via a secure access environment.

For more information about SURE see the Secure Access section or visit the Sax Institute