Resources for Working with Sensitive Data

If you are part of the College of Letters and Science, the Data & Information Services Center (DISC) can help you understand and comply with the rules for working with sensitive data. To request assistance, contact DISC Director Jack Solock (jsolock@ssc.wisc.edu). For more about the facilities DISC provides, see Sensitive Data Facilities. SSCC staff can assist you in implementing DISC recommendations--just contact the Help Desk.

The SSCC follows established best practices for maintaining the security of our computers and data. If a data agreement allows data to be stored on a network at all, it will generally allow the data to be stored on our network. If you have any questions, DISC staff will be your primary information source for sensitive data issues.

University Policies on Sensitive Data

Campus Initiatives

The SSCC's #1 recommendation is very simple: Store all sensitive data on network drives unless the rules for use of that data specifically forbid it. Files stored on network drives are much more secure than files stored on your laptop or even desktop computer—laptops in particular are very vulnerable to theft, but desktops can be stolen too.

If you must keep sensitive data on your own computer, log off when you leave, lock your office door, and use passwords wisely. University policy probably requires that you encrypt your hard drive (DISC staff can tell you for sure, and SSCC staff can help you do so). If you had to agree to certain practices in order to get access to the data, be sure to adhere to them strictly.