Are all queries logged?

Yes. All queries requested by each user and the response are recorded both in BC|RQuest software and in every BC|Link instance.  

How can we be sure the software is secure without seeing the source code?

BC Platforms have robust ISO accredited Quality Assurance and Information Security practices.  External security testing is documented and reviewed. 

Has the BC Platforms software been tested?

Yes. All components go under rigorous testing within BC Platforms. In addition, their testing programme has been presented and evaluated by the CO-CONNECT team. Their software platforms have undergone penetration testing at multiple locations and security assessments. 

What is BC|Link?

BC|Link software is installed behind the firewall of each Data Partner which holds the pseudo-anonymised version of the data the Data Partner wishes to make discoverable. BC|Link facilitates the Data Partner to answer the queries stored on the HDR Cohort Discovery platform by systematically applying a standardised mechanism to anonymise … Read More

Why is a copy of the data stored in BC|Link?

It is a core data protection concept to minimise data. CO-CONNECT has not specified what data each Data Partner must make discoverable. Each Data Partner goes through a process to determine what data should be made discoverable via the HDR UK Cohort Discovery Tool. It also ensures this software can … Read More

Can BC Platforms access the BC|Link software installed at each Data Partner.

No. The software is installed within a secure machine within the infrastructure of the Data Partner. No connections are allowed to the BC|Link software from any outside provider or third party. The only party to have access to the BC|Link software are the Data Partners who control and manage all access. 

Can BC|RQuest connect to BC|Link?

No. The communication protocol is that BC|Link connects to BC|RQuest to download any queries and respond. The Data Partner configures which BC|RQuests they wish to connect and download queries. No inbound firewall rules are required, meaning no connection from outside the Data Partners network to BC|Link is possible.

Why are BC Platforms involved?

The most crucial part of the process is the software that responds to a query, under the authority of the Data Partner, as it runs against a pseudo-anonymised dataset and produces the anonymised aggregated count. Instead of designing that process, security and accreditation from scratch CO-CONNECT chose a reputable company … Read More

What data does BC|RQuest hold?

BC|RQuest software, hosted by HDR UK, holds data on the users, their rights to run queries across the different Data Partners and the queries they requested to be run. For each query the response is also recorded, which is a count, and a gender distribution and age range if the … Read More

Do BC Platforms have access to individual data?

No. All access to the data is controlled by the Data Partner. BC Platforms do not have access to the computers or infrastructure in which individual data is stored. Technical precautions have also been made so that only appropriate staff from each Data Partner can connect to the computers that … Read More

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