Technical Design Authority

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The Technical Design Authority brings together technical IT and data experts from across the West Midlands region who review, agree, and implement the technical infrastructure of the West Midlands Secure Data Environment (WMSDE) platform.

Built to align with the principles of the Five Safes framework, the platform design prioritises cybersecurity, privacy protection, data integrity, data availability, and utility of data, ensuring a comprehensive and auditable approach to safe stewardship of data.

The platform has already undergone rigorous cybersecurity testing to guarantee resilience and safety and will continue to be subject to a programmed cycle of cybersecurity testing.

The WMSDE platform has been built in line with the following design principles:

  1. Privacy by design – this means that all aspects of processes are designed to ensure the highest levels of identity security.
  2. Cybersecurity – evidenced by undertaking external assessment by a CHECK-certified external supplier.
  3. Workforce – the people involved in the design-build and management all have the appropriate skills, competence and training to ensure that work processes are compliant with required standards.
  4. National data opt-out (NDOO) – the platform is built to ensure we can manage national data opt-out. Preserving individual choice about the use of data is built into the design by ensuring that there is a mechanism to check whether you have exercised your option to opt out of your data being used. This is completed by checking the NDOO register that is held by NHS England.
  5. Metadata catalogue – the platform includes software tooling that allows for the generation of a catalogue of the data held securely on the platform.
  6. The platform is adherent to ISO27001 standards, and the WMSDE staff are actively participating in the work of the UK Statistical Authority to develop a specific accreditation scheme for the national SDE network.