Digital Research Data Backup and Storage (DRDBS) Policy
Most Recent Version approved by Research Advisory Council Sept 13, 2017 and by IT Council Oct. 3, 2017
DRDBS Policy - Related Procedures
If your research does not involve human subject data you may choose to store and backup data on the S: network drive or on your ETSU Microsoft OneDrive business account. Anything stored on either the S: network drive or on OneDrive is automatically backed up for you. You can request a research folder on the S: drive using the Computer Account Request form below. All ETSU faculty, staff, and students have access to their own 1 TB OneDrive accounts which can be accessed using their ETSU credentials - you do not need to request a OneDrive account although you may want to download and install the OneDrive Sync Client (see links below) to enable automatic backup of selected folders.
When requesting a research folder on the S: drive, please use section 4 of the computer account request form to list those ETSU faculty, staff, and students who will require write access to the folder and you may want to suggest a name for the project folder.
If a student researcher is working on an ETSU research laboratory computer on Campus, that computer can easily be mapped to the S: drive. However, student researchers cannot access the S: drive from off campus and it is difficult for them to access the S: drive using computers in the open student labs, personal laptops, or personal mobile devices. If your research is primarily off campus and does not involve human subject data, you may want to store and backup your data on OneDrive which can be accessed via numerous devices on or off campus.
If you are running a Linux distro, there are a couple of partially completed OneDrive sync clients but none that we would recommend at this time. You can still take advantage of your 1 TB OneDrive space by authenticating to your ETSU OneDrive account via the web at www.onedrive.com and manually transferring files from your Linux machine to OneDrive. If you are using numerous devices to upload files to your OneDrive account, you may prefer to access your account via the web interface. The web interface will allow you to reliably view all files in your OneDrive account, regardless of how many different devices you used to upload the files.
Sharing Research Data
Federal or other grants may require that you share raw research data. Generally, you are only required to share data specific to publications. There are many ways that you can share data (email, CDs, DVDs, flash drives) but network sharing is very convenient - at ETSU, you might send someone data files using ETSU's secure dropbox (limit 2 GB per file), or share research files or folders using your ETSU Microsoft Business OneDrive account, or authorize access to a data set on the RedCap survey server. The person wishing to see your data does not have to have ETSU credentials; they might authenticate with a non-ETSU email address, for example. If you need to make a generic research dataset publicly available, you might upload the data file(s) to the faculty.etsu.edu server and post a link to that file on a webpage.
If the dataset involves HIPAA or other identifiable human data, the data must be thoroughly de-identified prior to sharing - you may want to confirm that a dataset is safe to share with the HIPAA Compliance Officer or IRB Chair.
Students can easily share generic research data (data not involving human subjects) with their research supervisors by setting up a shared folder on their ETSU OneDrive for Business Account. Students can upload data files to their OneDrive account using a number of networked devices and from nearly any networked location in the world. Just create a research folder and then use "share with" to give your research supervisor permission to access your research data using their ETSU credentials. When sharing folders on your OneDrive account, set folder permission to "view only." This will prevent anyone from accidentally deleting one of your data files.
If you are working with HIPAA or PHI research data, encryption requirements are in place and you will have encountered those requirements in your HIPAA training. If you are working with FERPA or other identifiable human research data, encryption is recommended. If you are working with generic data (data not involving human subjects), you might choose to encrypt your research data for any number of reasons, a common one being that you are involved in a competitive research field. If you do decide to encrypt your research data, be sure to share your decryption key with your co-investigators and to back up the decryption key somewhere safe such as an ETSU network drive or on your OneDrive account.
You can encrypt your own flash drives and mobile devices:
- Back up existing files on your flash drive before encrypting, just in case something goes wrong.
- On a Mac, you can encrypt a flash drive with or without files by right clicking on the flash drive and selecting "encrypt (flashdrive name)." You can open the flashdrive on any Mac.
- On a PC, you can right click on the flash drive and select "Turn on Bitlocker." Existing files will be encrypted. Select compatibility mode. You can even open the flash drive on Macs by installing M3 Bitlocker Loader for Mac.
- On a Linux running the Gnome Desktop, you can encrypt a flash drive using Disk Utility. The flash drive will be re-formatted and all files erased. The flash drive will not work on PC's or Mac's but can be opened on any Linux running the Gnome Desktop.
- Always save your password and/or encryption key in a safe location.
- Phones can be encrypted using security settings.
- Do not interrupt an encryption process in progress as data may be lost.
Research and Data Subject to Export Control
If your planned research is subject to export control regulations, contact Wendy Eckert,
ETSU Assistant VP of Research and Director of Sponsored Programs at 423-439-6000 or
Research and Data Involving Human Subjects
If your planned research involves human subjects in any way, contact one of the IRB
Chairs. If your planned research involves HIPAA identifiers you will need to contact the
HIPAA Compliance Officer.
Campus IRB Chair -Dr. Stacey Williams at 423-439-4615 or email@example.com.
Medical IRB Chair - Dr. George Youngberg at 423-439-6120 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
HIPAA Compliance Officer - Lindsay Daniel at 423-439-8533 or email@example.com.
REDCap Research Servers
We currently manage two REDCap servers, one of which is HIPAA compliant. REDCap servers
are free resources for ETSU researchers and their off-campus collaborators. The servers provide
the ability to build databases or acquire data via surveys. Any ETSU employee or student may use etsuredcap.etsu.edu for research purposes. This server may NOT be used for HIPAA or PHI data. The etsuredcap-h.etsu.edu server is available for research containing PHI or HIPAA-regulated data. Please
use the Computer Account Request Form below to request an account on either server.
If your study data are being acquired for publications or presentations, you must
have IRB approval and that protocol number should be indicated on the Computer Account
Introduction to the REDCap Server
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call x94142 on campus (423-439-4142 from off campus)
We are available to help review, download, install, update, migrate, and launch research-related software applications. Please keep copies of all software licenses for warranty and migration purposes.