Secure Data Rooms

HGSE researchers are frequently the recipients of highly sensitive or confidential information from their data providers. As such, these researchers are sometimes required to reserve a secure data room in which to perform and analyze their research due to 1.) Certain data classification levels assigned by their respective Institutional Review Board (IRB) (either Longwood Medical Area or University Area), 2.) Terms of Restricted-Use data licenses, or 3.) Terms of Data Use Agreements (DUAs) negotiated between HGSE’s Office of Sponsored Projects (HGSE-OSP) and data providers.

Request Process

HGSE has developed a secure data room request workflow and process to assist its researchers in determining whether or not they 1.) Require a secure data room for their research, and if so, 2.) How and where to begin the application process. Currently, this workflow and process is undergoing revision. In the interim, researchers are encouraged to request a security consultation with HGSE's Director of Security Operations (DSO) by contacting the the IT Service Center to help determine their specific needs for a secure data room.

NCES/IES Restricted-Use Secure Data Rooms

NCES/IES Restricted-Use data Licenses impose significant restrictions on who can have a License, who can access the data, and where and how the data can be housed. One such restriction includes the use of secure data room where the Restricted-Use data is stored and used by Licensed researchers.

Due to the widespread demand for NCES/IES Restricted-Use data from our student and faculty researchers at HGSE combined with the significant resource overhead required of license applicants (e.g., NCES/IES Restricted-Use data can only be stored and used on an pre-approved stand-alone, non-networked desktop computer stored within a pre-approved, access controlled space), HGSE has allocated and exclusively dedicated Room 307 in Gutman Library for use as a shared, NCES/IES Restricted-Use Secure Data Room (SDR). Gutman 307 has been pre-approved by NCES/IES as a centralized location at HGSE where approved NCES/IES Restricted-Use data users may store and work with their data.

Researchers interested in applying for a new NCES/IES Restricted-Use data License using the SDR as their secure project office or being added to a current License already within the SDR (see "Adding/Deleting License Users") should follow the steps found here: https://its.gse.harvard.edu/information-security/research/secure-data-rooms/sdr.