We often get the question: how safe is it to transfer patient’s genomic data to the cloud? By this most people refer to the transfer of their NGS-based patient data to external web-based services (e.g. Illumina Basespace) that run on the public cloud of other third-party providers (e.g. Amazon AWS).
Of course, patient genetic data security should be a top priority. New sequencing technologies create large data volumes for each patient, and often small labs and hospitals assume that they cannot cope with the required increase in computational resources, leaving the cloud the only option. After all, cloud-based solutions are good for cases where varying amounts of data must be processed flexibly. But it is also true that a patient’s genetic testing data has a different privacy value compared to for example videos, music, images or other large data. Genetic testing data contains highly personal information, including health, behavioural and biometric information, and is an even more unique marker than a fingerprint. A DNA data breach is much worse than a credit card breach.
With that in mind, let us address the following misconceptions and myths we often hear. ...read more