Data security

Digital data is prone to risks, like hacking or cyber-attacks, especially when there is a lack of security. Radboud University offers the best protection for your data, but if you are not able to use the university network drive you should consider other options to protect your data. This is especially the case when you are working with critical or sensitive data or in conflict areas.

Location of data

  • Hard-copy critical and sensitive data has to be kept in a locker with access for authorised personnel only.
  • The best digital storage location is the university network drive. In case of critical and sensitive data, the university network drive is the only location allowed.
  • Keep in mind that public (free) storage or transfer services are no option for critical or sensitive data and it is even not wise to use them for standard. Read more on safe storage options.

Encrypt your devices

  • You may use Filevault (Mac) or Bitlocker (Windows) to encrypt your device, or use the open source VeraCrypt.
  • Use full-disk encryption (FDE) to prevent others to extract information from your devices.
  • For modern mobile devices, disk encryption is either default (IOS) or available (Android).
  • When you might be forced to reveal you password, Veracrypt has the possibility to construct a hidden operation system. Depending on the password you enter, the hidden operation system or the decoy system are activated. Make sure you decoy system contains plausible content and disable network adapters for the hidden system.

Encrypt your data

  • If it is necessary to keep your data at an untrusted storage location or you need to transport it over a network, you can encrypt your data using for instance VeraCrypt or Axcrypt. To access the data you need a key.
  • E-mail communication can also be encrypted.

Use VPN to transfer data

  • Even when your data is safely stored and encrypted or anonymised, transport is risky. The best way to ensure safe transport between the university network drive and your home computer is to use the VPN connection of the university.

Wipe storage devices after use

  • There are simple tools that are able to retrieve information after you deleted it. To secure your device, utilities as Permanent Eraser (Mac) and CCleaner can be used to destroy the data by overwriting it with zero’s or random characters
  • To erase all data from your device you can use for instance Dban

Read more