Decentralised and Remote Access to Confidential Data in the ESS (DARA)

The aim of the ESSnet project DARA is to establish a secure channel from a safe centre within a NSI to the safe server at Eurostat so that researchers can use confidential community statistics in their own Member States without traveling to Luxembourg.

The concrete task of participating NSIs is to provide a secure channel to guarantee access for data users to the remote access system at Eurostat and also to provide service and IT-support for the researcher on the local national level.

Project description

Based on the former feasibility study in the project “ESSnet on Decentralised Access to EU Microdata Sets”, the project aim is an implementation of a decentralised remote access from NSI Safe Centres to the community statistics in Eurostat exemplarily for the ECHP.


1. Documentation and Workflow 

  • Define rules and standards for a remote access to confidential data in the ESS
  • Draft of a request form for data access
  • Compile a manual for NSI regarding workflow when data access is requested
  • Documentation and communication


D1.1: First draft of a manual for the scientific community including a detailed request form, and a manual for workflow description in NSIs

D1.2: Final version of a manual for the scientific community including a detailed request form, and a manual for workflow description in NSIs (Handbook for members of the ESS, especially Access Facility Staff)

D1.3: Handbook for researchers

2. Concept of technical implementation and safety requirements for remote access

  • Define client requirements, authentication process and accreditation
  • Clarify the role of the NSIs (workflow and process)
  • Define input/output checking process (who, where ...)
  • Possible operability of different system and interfaces
  • Integration of existing systems
  • Test procedure: check-list of security verification (from client to host)


D2.1: Manual of all the required specifications for security, interoperability, workflows, including the check-list of security constraints (from client to host).

3.  Cost benefit analysis

  • Based on the cost template of the former project

                   -  staff planning (rates each qualification/grade)

                   -  breakdown on strategy and operational costs

                   -  breakdown on fixed and variable costs

                   -  number of projects

                   -  IT costs


D3.1: Best practice for cost benefit analyses for the decentralised use of community statistics included in the final report.

4.  Implementation of remote access - case study

  • Define all the necessary elements needed to implement a pilot
  • (hardware, software, organisation, use-cases)
  • Implementing a pilot in one country and evaluate it
  • Extend the pilot to 2 or 3 other countries for evaluation purpose (double-output checking, workflows, etc.)
  • Organise a security audit of each process


D4.1: the pilot (10 PC thin clients configured) and a presentation of the experimentation of decentralised access via remote access (limits, results, feedback from researchers).

5.  Communication and dissemination to the ESS

  • Upgrading and update of project website
  • Presentation of the project contents on the ESSnet portal
  • Presentation of intermediate and final results
  • Information via e-mail invitation to MS in the ESS


D5.1: Presentation about the goals and state of affairs in the project on the UNECE/Eurostat work session on Statistical Data Confidentiality 2011 in Tarragona.

D5.2: Upgrading and update of the website with description and objectives of the project.

D5.3: Presentation of intermediate results of the project on project website

D5.4: Presentation of final results of the project on project website, information via e-mail invitation to all MS in the ESS and in the upcoming Joint UNECE/Eurostat conference work session on Statistical Data Confidentiality in 2013.


6.  Project management


D6.1: intermediate report

D6.2: final report


Further information

The website of the forerunner project  "ESSnet on Decentralised Access to EU Microdata Sets" can be found here: http://www.safe-centre.eu/


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