Access to the Secure Lab

How to apply for access to Secure Access (Controlled) data at the UK Data Service.

Controlled data are only available in the Secure Lab to researchers who are able to fulfil the following requirements:

  1. The purpose of the use of the data for your project must provide a public benefit/serve the public good
  2. You must have attended Safe Researcher Training, and be an Accredited Researcher (AR). This status is currently administered by the ONS through their Research Accreditation Service (RAS). Register for an account through the RAS registration system or if you already have one, login to your RAS account. You must have an undergraduate degree (or higher) including a significant proportion of maths or statistics, or be able to demonstrate at least 3 years quantitative research experience 
  3. If you are a postgraduate student you can request access but will need to apply jointly with your supervisor(s). Undergraduates can apply but should be highly experienced data analysts
  4. You must check any specific access restrictions for each study in our Data Catalogue that you wish to use, found in the 'Access' tab
  5. You must only access data from within the UK (SN 6676 can be accessed by German researchers, subject to meeting other conditions)

You can read about our security philosophy and software available at: Secure Lab: How it works and watch our short 5 Safes animation explaining the process.

Apply for access
Complete user agreement
Attend training course
Secure Lab Account setup

Apply to set up your Secure Lab account

In order to access our Secure Lab you need to provide essential information on connectivity from your organisation or institution.

You will need to complete a Secure Lab Account Set up application (a link will be provided during your Secure Access application). The endpoint device you will use to access the Secure Lab (i.e. your workstation) must:

  • Be owned and managed by the institution from which the Secure Lab will be accessed
  • Have a direct connection to the internet via a wired ethernet connection
  • Have a dedicated public IP address that is unique to your endpoint device
  • Have no other network interfaces connected except for the one being used to access the Secure Lab, this includes using VPNs
  • Not be running any services which allow third parties to connect to the workstation e.g. a web server or email server

The following security measures must be observed:

  • When Secure Lab is accessed, only the wired ethernet is used, and that the wireless is not connected simultaneously
  • You must only access Secure Lab from your designated office, not from any other location on or off campus
  • You must observe good security measures e.g. locking your screens when leaving unattended, not allowing your screens to be visible to people other than Secure Lab users working on the same Secure Lab project
  • Your Secure Lab credentials must not be saved in the web browser

As part of the application you are required to submit as evidence: 

  1. Screen shots for your device of: 
  2. Photographs clearly showing the view to the front, left, right and rear of your desk, this is to determine if your workstation is overlooked (required if you work in a shared office).

Once everything has passed our security checks, you will then be provided with login credentials for access to the UK Data Service Secure Lab.

If at a later date the layout of your room/workspace changes substantively you must notify Technical Support immediately and not use the service until authorised to do so.

IMPORTANT NOTE: For home working during COVID-19, additional steps to these must be followed. Please ensure that you have your account fully set up and your project(s) approved before you request home working.

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We expect to run as normal a service as possible during this COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Please visit our COVID-19 page for the latest information.