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Management and storage of research data

Tampere University and TAMK

Research Data Services

Research Data Services is the one-stop-shop for providing research data management services and tools for the staff and students at Tampere Universities. Our services involve the University Library’s data support, IT Services, research and innovation services, legal services, document management, and the Finnish Social Science Data Archive, which is a specialist in the management of research data. Via Research Data Services, you may reach experts specialised in, for example, research data protection and research ethics. Please see Research Data Services | Tampere Universities ( for more information.

Storage options

Our Universities community offers different options for storing data depending on its nature and purpose. In addition to general solutions, special arrangements can also be made depending on needs. Special arrangements may be needed because of the amount, nature (e.g., sensitivity), processing or contractual aspects of the data. Instructions for selecting storage space are available at Storage selection.

Please request help with a low threshold from the Tampere University Research Data Services regarding processing of research data, from IT Helpdesk regarding information security or from the dpo [at] (Data Protection Officer) regarding data protection.

Personal data or otherwise confidential data

If you process personal data, you must always carry out a data protection risk assessment of the processing, see the pages Data protection in research – general instructions and Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA).

If you process material belonging to special categories of personal data (Article 9 of the EU General Data Protection Regulation) or other data whose leakage into the wrong hands could potentially lead to more than minor damage:

  • The processing must be subject to a thorough data protection impact assessment (DPIA), see the page Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) for instructions on how to do so.
  • If a student needs to process special categories of personal data, the faculty must enter into an extended resource agreement for the student and request via ITHelpdesk a centrally managed computer (similar to that of the staff) for the student.
  • Data may only be processed on a computer centrally maintained by IT Services, never on one's own home computer.
  • Files must be always stored encrypted with a special program, see instructions below.

Encrypting files

There are two alternative programs available for encrypting files, Cryptomator and VeraCrypt. The protection of both is strong enough for the storage of all types of personal data, including the special categories of personal data as specified in Article 9 of the EU General Data Protection Regulation

  • You should use Cryptomator for projects with more than one member. It's advantage is that it stores each encrypted file separately, and if you save a set of files in a shared location, multiple users can comfortably access them. The storage location can be a shared location (such as Teams folder or group directory) or a personal location (such as OneDrive, a computer or a USB drive connected to it). For more information, see the page Cryptomator encryption software
  • You should use VeraCrypt if you need it's special advantages. It's limitation is that it stores a set of files in one large, encrypted file which can only be accessed by one user at a time. It's advantages are that it also encrypts the metadata of the files (number, sizes, dates) and the National Cyber Security Centre Finland has approved it for storing classified information. Additionally, it's single file is easier to move or send. For more information on VeraCrypt, see the user guide below. 

Instructions for both encryption software: If you want to store especially sensitive data, such as the special categories of data specified in the Article 9 of the GDPR, on an external USB device, you will have to first encrypt the device on the file system level. On a Windows computer, it means encrypting the USB device with BitLocker, please find instructions below. For Mac computers, the respective instructions are available on Apple's web page. Only after that you can store especially sensitive data on the USB device encrypted with Cryptomator or VeraCrypt.

Services of CSC

CSC offers Sensitive Data Desktop, which is a general tool for processing sensitive data remotely. CSC Secure Desktop is Linux-based and has limited software collection now.

CSC's service Fairdata IDA is a safe and easy-to-use storage for research datasets and metadata. IDA can be used with multiple interfaces. The data uploaded to the services is saved into projects and the users can be affiliated with multiple separate projects. Data uploaded to IDA is also checked for malware and backed up. You can log into IDA with your organizational account and after that apply for storage space. To continuously store data in IDA, the CSC project associated with the data needs to be kept active even when the data is published.

More info on CSC's services:

Operating environments for Secondary Use of Health and Social Data

Increasingly, sensitive data can only be processed in the data provider’s own remote access environment. These include, for example, the Fiona service of Statistics Finland, Findata’s Kapseli service and the remote access environments of hospital districts. In these cases, the functionalities, and costs of using remote access platforms should be considered when planning research projects.

Termination of data processing

Often, the processing of different data is subject to conditions set by the donor of the material or due to regulation. For example, the storage period of data containing personal data is limited. On the other hand, due to the limitation of storage space, it is important to take care of either proper storage or destruction of the data at the end of active use. If you need support in planning the processing of the data, contact the Data Service: researchdata [at] (researchdata[at]tuni[dot]fi).


IT Helpdesk
0294 520 500
it-helpdesk [at] (it-helpdesk[at]tuni[dot]fi)

Published: 19.10.2022
Updated: 3.4.2024