Contents of this article:
- Physical security of data
- Storage redundancy
- Destruction of data
- Secure encryption
- Organisational security
- Service level
- Authorization and access control
- Input data that contain personal data
- Output data that contain personal data
- Control of rejected access attempts
- Home offices
- GDPR Security obligations
- Privacy by design
- External review, certification and audit
- Password Security
- Firmware, software and data integrity processes
- Development/Test Environment
- Additional security controls
- Continuous Improvement of security protections
IRIS Connect takes the responsibility of acting as a processor of personal data extremely
seriously. We constantly review our procedural, organisational and physical security to
ensure that we are offering a service that our customers can trust.
We have completed multiple external audits, gap analysis and penetration testing of our
services to ensure that we meet industry best practices and the principles of GDPR.
All data is stored and processed on Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure.
The data is restricted to centres based in:
- Ireland for our EU platform
- America for our US platform
- Australia for our OCE platform
AWS are international industry leaders in the provision of secure cloud services and they
hold numerous domestic and international security accreditations.
Please visit this page for further information on Amazon security and compliance.
In addition to their international reputation and security and compliance certifications, we
have had confidential access to their independent SOC-2 audit report so that we could
review and analyse their security in detail.
Physical security of data
The AWS environment utilises state-of-the art network security, electronic surveillance,
physical security and multi-factor access control system to protect client data. The data
centres are staffed 24×7 by trained security teams.
To enhance redundancy we:
- Take hourly backups of our database
- Save data to multiple availability zones within the region.
- Verify the integrity of the data using checksums, automatically repairing any data
Destruction of data
Customer data (financial) is retained in line with local legal frameworks.
Customer data (non-financial) will be securely disposed of and / or transferred to the client
following termination of licence.
Data that the client has deleted will be held in a deleted state for 90 days, then deleted
completely. 180 days later, the last backup dataset that contained the resource will be
deleted. The time period from user deletion to complete removal is 270 days (approx nine
There are certain occasions when information needs to be preserved beyond this limit, such
as in the following circumstances:
- Legal proceedings or a regulatory or similar investigation or obligation to produce
information are known to be likely, threatened or actual,
- A crime is suspected or detected,
The highest standard of industry procedure is used when decommissioning storage devices at the end of their useful life (our data centre decommissions storage devices using techniques in line with NIST 800-88).
IRIS Connect ensures any customer data in transit is encrypted using the leading industry practice (TLS 1.2 RSA 2048 bit SHA 256 certificates). Additionally, data stored on mobile devices is encrypted to ensure that data is protected before it enters our secure cloud service.
Data at rest on our servers is encrypted with 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-256)
Cryptographic keys are managed by using specific key management systems such as Last Pass and AWS Key Management Service.
IRIS Connect, in line with GDPR and ISO27001 recommendations, regularly reviews its
organisational and cyber security and has comprehensive information security processes
and protocols. We have been externally audited and certificated to ensure that we comply to a high
standard of organisational and cyber security
IRIS Connect has the Cyber Essentials Plus certification
IRIS Connect utilises market-leading services for data processing and storage. We use
automatically scaling infrastructure to deal with increases in service traffic.
IRIS Connect have provided 99.9% service uptime in the last 18 months during core
operating hours (8am – 6pm).
IRIS Connect provides free full support to all customers, enabling us to quickly resolve any
issues logged. This is provided Monday – Friday between 8am – 5pm GMT, with
additional limited support until 10pm.
The support team is available via live chat, email and phone.
Authorization and access control
IRIS Connect has been constructed with privacy-by-design principles at its core. This
ensures that user role separation and permissioning governs access to appropriate data and
Each IRIS Connect client nominates an Organisation Administrator who is responsible for
agreeing to and enforcing the IRIS Connect End User Licence Agreement (EULA) when they
first sign into the system.
The terms of the EULA make the use of the system conditional on appropriate local
agreements to ensure that all relevant parties are informed about the use of the system and
have provided appropriate permissions for the capture and sharing of video.
The EULA also stipulates that the system is used within a supportive developmental
framework and that end users are aware of their obligations and responsibilities for data
management and sharing. This agreement also gives individual users the right to delete
videos and ensures that individual videos will not be recorded or shared with any other IRIS
Connect user without their explicit permission.
The IRIS Connect system is based on individual user accounts and permissioning. This
means that the observed user has to agree to a recording taking place before the system
allows another user to connect to the camera. The same protections exist once a video has
been encrypted and uploaded. This means users are only able to see data that has been
explicitly shared with them. By default users are limited to sharing videos with other users at
their organization, although collaboration with other organizations can be enabled at the request of the clients’ Organization Administrator who has appropriate data sharing
agreements in place.
Users have complete control over who has access to their data by deciding to share videos
either with individual users or into a group library. A fundamental principle of the system is
that users will never “lose sight or control” of their video. They will always be able to see the
video and any associated data.
Users retain the right to delete a video or remove sharing privileges at any time.
Our staff have strict controls over who may access data and protocols for gaining permission
from clients if access is required.
Input data that contain personal data
Only the data owners have access to the data at the input stage. Users are responsible for
input into the system and data can only be input into users’ specific account with the
confidential password and unique username.
IRIS Connect Equipment, including the Discovery Kit, Starter Kit, Apple & Android devices
(when used with the IRIS Connect app) do not permanently store files locally.
For full user control and data security, videos are never stored on individual devices or local
servers. Instead, they are encrypted, immediately uploaded to our platform and
automatically deleted from the device they were recorded on. The platform is designed to
ensure that data remains in a secure, password protected environment.
The deletion of the input data by a user is managed via an automated process built into the
design of the system
Output data that contain personal data
The IRIS Connect system is based on individual user accounts and permissioning, where
each user has their own personal username and password for their account in our platform.
The observed user has to agree to a recording taking place before the system allows
another user to connect to the camera. The same protections exist once a video has been
encrypted and uploaded. This means users are only able to see data that has been explicitly
shared with them. Users are limited to sharing videos with other users at their organisation,
or collaboration with other organisations if this has been enabled with the permission of the
All data is securely stored and can only be delivered to the user via an encrypted channel.
The organisation and its users are in complete control of their data, so we will only destroy
data upon the instruction of the Data Controller. If the data is deleted by the owner, deleted
data will be stored for 3 months in case the customer needs to retrieve it. The back-ups will
be stored for a further 3 months before being securely and automatically destroyed to
ensure that it cannot be misused or accessed by unauthorised persons
External communication connections
The IRIS Connect system is fully cloud-based and designed to ensure that unauthorised
persons cannot gain access to data. IRIS Connect ensures any data in transit is encrypted
using the leading industry practice (TLS 1.2). Any data removed from our secure system is
done so under authorisation of the Data Controller or by authorised personnel for the
purpose of data processing.
Control of rejected access attempts
The IRIS Connect platform logs every account login attempt. The system also blocks
repeated login attempts to the same account within a determined time period, by locking the
user’s account until this is reviewed by an authorised person.
IRIS Connect collects comprehensive user activity logs that are stored for three months.
IRIS Connect does not permit and physically restricts data processing at home, including
holding data locally or printing data locally. All data is held securely within our cloud-based
GDPR Security obligations
IRIS Connect has completed an external audit of all of its services and teams to ensure that
it is fully compliant with GDPR, including article 32.
Privacy by design
As recommended by the ICO, IRIS Connect has been constructed with privacy-by-design
principles at its core. This ensures that user role separation and permissioning governs
access to appropriate data and features. Each IRIS Connect client is required to nominate
an Organisation Administrator and Data Protection Officer who are responsible for agreeing
to, and enforcing, the IRIS Connect terms and conditions for use.
These terms make the use of the system conditional on appropriate local agreements to
ensure that all relevant parties are informed about the use of the system and have provided
appropriate permissions for the capture and sharing of video.
By default, users are limited to sharing videos with other users at their organisation, although
collaboration with other organisations can be enabled by the Organisation Administrator
where they have appropriate data sharing agreements in place. There are automated
systems and interfaces in place that allow Organisation Administrators to quickly increase or
decrease the scope in which their users can share data.
Users have complete control over who has access to their data, within the scope defined by
the Organisation Administrator, deciding to share observations either with individual users or
into a group library. A fundamental principle of the system is that users will never “lose sight
or control” of their video. They will always be able to see the video and any associated data.
Users have the ability to delete a video or remove sharing privileges at any time.
Only the data owners have access to the data at input stage. Users are responsible for input
into the system, and data can only be inputted into users specific accounts with the
confidential password and unique username. The deletion of the inputted data by a user is
managed via an automated process built into the design of the system. All data is securely
stored and can only be delivered to appropriate users via an encrypted channel
External review, certification and audit
We have been externally audited and certificated to ensure that we comply with a high
standard of organisational and cyber security. This includes:
- Achieved Department for Education’s Cloud Service Providers Self Certification
which was independently verified
- Gained Government-backed industry-supported scheme; Cyber Essentials Plus
- ISO and GDPR gap analysis via an independent 3rd party auditor
Each user has their own login. Sharing of logins is prohibited as part of the EULA which all users must agree to before use of the IRIS Connect system.
Passwords are protected from brute force detection via the login attempts settings and automated systems designed to detect suspicious requests.
We store passwords as salted hashes. Protocol is PBKDF2 with 2000 rounds of SHA512 with a width of 64 bits
- Password Security: An organisation is able to configure the password required strength
for users’ accounts for the IRIS Connect platform. This can be customised to either medium or high requirements depending on the organisation’s need.
The settings cover password length, complexity (symbol, digits, upper case etc), enforced reset time, number of login attempts and lockout period.
To request this feature contact our support desk.
- 2 Factor Authentication: An organisation is able to enforce 2-factor authentication for user account login.
Both of these password options can be set to enforce all your users to conform to them.
IRIS Connect supports SSO through an LTI integration and for some customers through SAML 2.2. Please contact your consultant to discuss these requirements.
Firmware, software and data integrity processes
We recognize the critical importance of maintaining the integrity of our software, firmware, and information. To ensure the integrity of these components, we utilise integrity checking mechanisms that verify their integrity and detect any unauthorized modifications or tampering attempts. By implementing these mechanisms, we enhance our ability to protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of our systems and data.
Below is a list of tools and processes we utlise:
Digital Signatures and Certificates:
We utilize digital signatures and certificates to verify the integrity and authenticity of software, firmware, and other critical files.
Secure Software and Firmware Updates:
We ensure that software and firmware updates come from trusted sources and are digitally signed to maintain their integrity.
Change Management and Version Control:
We follow a formal change management process that includes version control to track and manage the integrity of changes to software, firmware, and information.
Data integrity checks:
Data integrity is maintained through distribution to multiple availability zones using checksums to identify any repair any discrepancies.
Product updates are deployed automatically via continuous integration pipelines to our staging environment for manual quality assurance testing before they are deployed to production.
This is industry best practice of maintaining separate development and testing environments from the production environment. This separation helps mitigate risks and ensure the integrity and stability of our production systems. By keeping development and testing activities isolated from the live environment, we can minimize the impact of potential issues and maintain a secure and reliable production environment.
Additional security controls
In line with GDPR, IRIS Connect are able to provide the additional security controls:
Anonymisation of shared data: The owner of any video on the IRIS Connect platform can
automatically convert their video to anonymised mode prior to sharing.
Use Case: This tool preserves the anonymity of learners by obscuring distinguishing
features, assuming that no other identifiable details are contained in the video (such as
someone using a data subject's full name within the clip) this enables broader sharing of
video assets. Further information about this feature can be found in our help guides.
Mobile app auto-anonymisation of recordings: Either the individual user or the
Organisation Administrator can set recordings with the Record app to be recorded using the
anonymisation filter. This means no un-anonymised data is captured.
- Thumbnail previews of video content is available for admins by default to ensure the appropriate use of the system.
- Access logging feature is available upon request
- Lesson Codes is available upon request
Continuous improvement of security protections
We prioritize the continuous improvement of our protection processes to adapt to emerging threats, enhance our cybersecurity posture, and mitigate risks effectively. By regularly assessing and refining our protection processes, we ensure that our systems, data, and assets remain secure and resilient.
We utilise the following tools and processes:
Regular Risk Assessments: a. We conduct regular risk assessments to identify new or changing threats, vulnerabilities, and potential impacts.
b. These assessments help us understand the evolving threat landscape and identify areas where our protection processes can be strengthened.
Incident Response Reviews: a. Following security incidents, we perform comprehensive post-incident reviews and analyses.
b. Through these reviews, we identify any gaps or weaknesses in our protection processes and make necessary improvements to prevent similar incidents in the future.
Security Awareness and Training: a. We provide ongoing security awareness and training programs to educate employees and stakeholders about the latest threats, best practices, and their roles in protecting our systems and data.
b. We regularly update training materials to address emerging threats and promote a culture of security awareness throughout the organization.
Threat Intelligence and Information Sharing: a. We stay updated with the latest threat intelligence sources, industry reports, and security advisories.
b. By actively participating in information-sharing forums and collaborating with peer organizations, we gain valuable insights and leverage best practices to enhance our protection processes.
Security Controls Monitoring and Testing: a. We continuously monitor the effectiveness of our security controls through proactive monitoring, logging, and analysis.
b. Regular security assessments, vulnerability scans, and penetration testing help us identify weaknesses and validate the effectiveness of our protection processes.
Patch and Vulnerability Management: a. We have established a robust patch management process to ensure timely application of security patches and updates.
b. We actively monitor and assess vulnerabilities in our software, systems, and networks, prioritizing their remediation based on risk levels.
Incident Metrics and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs): a. We define and track relevant incident response metrics and KPIs to measure the effectiveness of our protection processes.
b. These metrics help us identify areas for improvement and measure our progress in enhancing our protection capabilities.
By continuously improving our protection processes, we strengthen our overall cybersecurity posture, minimize risks, and ensure the ongoing security and resilience of our systems and data. Our commitment to continuous improvement aligns with industry best practices, regulatory requirements, and the dynamic nature of the cybersecurity landscape.
Updated: June 2023