Data Awareness Training

Here we provide access to the training materials developed by Cancer Research UK (Cancer Intelligence team) and The Health Foundation (Data Analytics team).

Module File Description

The 5 Safes

Download here (pptx) Introduction to the 5 Safes as an Information Security Management System framework
Data Awareness and Legal Introduction Download slides (pptx)

Assign the classification level example

Why are some data more sensitive than others? Where are different types of data access?  How does the law apply?

This covers Safe Data and Safe Projects.

Cancer Research UK have kindly offered to provide their teaching materials associated with this module (this is a set of tables designed to demonstrate the anonymisation process)

Safe People Download here (pptx) This module introduces the concept of Safe People:  what should we expect of people who access sensitive data?
Introduction to Safe Outputs Download here (pptx) How might a disclosure occur? What is Statistical Disclosure Control? The next modules are all about producing and releasing Safe Outputs
Frequency tables Download here (pptx) How to undertake SDC of frequency tables
Descriptive statistics Download here (pptx) How to undertake SDC of descriptive statistics
Group disclosure Download here (pptx) How to manage group disclosure
Dominance rule Download here (pptx) How to ensure the dominance rule in SDC has been met
Graphs Download here (pptx) How to undertake SDC for graphs
Regressions Download here (pptx) SDC considerations for regressions (modelled outputs)
Other outputs Download here (pptx)

Example outputs

How to undertake SDC for some other statistical output types

Cancer Research UK have kindly offered to provide their teaching materials associated with this module (this is a set of examples for SDC training)

What isn’t covered here?

Safe Settings.  Every service or institution operating a Safe Setting (Secure Data Environment, Data Safe Haven etc.) will have a slightly different facility.  We strongly recommend that the Safe Setting is explained to the users.  Content could cover:

  • What is the Safe Setting?
  • How does it work?
  • IT and physical security features
  • The role of the researcher in keeping the Safe Setting safe
  • How researchers and Safe Setting staff can work together to maintain and improve the Safe Setting

About the Data Awareness Training

These ‘generic’ slide training packs have been developed for use by organisations intending to provide training to their users.

These materials were first developed around May 2018 when the GDPR legislation was implemented in the UK. These materials have been developed by Richard Welpton (then at Cancer Research UK but now at ESRC), Yannis Kotrotsios (then at Cancer Research UK but now at The Health Foundation) and Simon Parker (then at The Health Foundation, but now DFKZ, Germany) Through them, further ideas have been introduced into the training materials.


In addition, Yannis has worked hard to produce assessments that users can undertake.

There is an assessment at the end of each set of slides, which can be accessed by clicking on the link provided.

If you want to use the assessment, then providing you have an Office 365 account, you can click on the DUPLICATE button and save it for yourself, to then use for your own service.

Data Awareness Training and IG accreditations

We are confident that the training and the assessments will be useful for anybody providing secure access to health records; in Safe Settings that have to be recognised for the NHS Digital Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT).  But the person responsible for the DSPT should verify this.