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FABRIC: Working with Health Data Securely

What is this resource?


The CTSI-CN is developing FABRIC, a cloud based environment that allows investigators and clinicians to securely access an array of data repositories, and work with their data using integrated customizable query tools. FABRIC is:


  • We will spin up an environment scaled to your data-sets. You will always have the space and computing power your need as FABRIC is almost infinitely scalable
  • This is not a one-time scaling, the size of your FABRIC project can be ramped up or down at any time


  • FABRIC provides access to an array of existing data repositories
  • It uses a “hub and spoke” environment design that allows us to segregate or integrate research projects and data


  • FABRIC provides access to a suite of advanced tools for acquiring, integrating, querying and analyzing data (e.g., Galaxy, R, Python, Office365)

FABRIC also offers: 

  • Windows based Data Science Work Stations 
  • Linux based Data Science Workstations 
  • Cloud Database Services (Custom application) 
  • Additional Database Server alternatives 
  • Additional shared “raw” storage (Azure blob or AWS S3 buckets) 


  • Security is built around centralized Identity Access Management and Single Sign On with Multi Factor Authentication
  • Additional security measures involve Certificate-based access to Virtual Private Networks.
  • FABRIC uses secured enclaves to house and protect data, and allows you to work with de-identified datasets


  • FABRIC enables research collaborations through the sharing of datasets
  • Collaborators can conduct simultaneous analysis on shared data
  • FABRIC uses Role Based Access Control to define the level of access your collaborators will experience
  • It offers transparency and security within a collaboration as it auto-generates a history audit of who did what and when to the data
  • All of the tools found in FABRIC (such as Galaxy, R, Python, Office 365) are made available simultaneously to multiple users. 
  • Important note: Software compatibility issues for your collaborators are minimized as the same versions of tools are available for everyone working in your project.

FABRIC is in the final stages of development.

In the meantime, let us know if you are interested in using this tool by responding to our short FABRIC survey, and take a look at our introductory video HERE.

Who can use this resource?

When completed, all Children’s National Hospital and George Washington University research faculty and staff can use FABRIC.

Who should I contact for more information?

For more information, please contact the INSIGHTS Support Team at

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