Facilitating Secure Sharing of Personal Health Data in the Cloud

Background:Internet-based applications are providing new ways of promoting health and reducing the cost of care. Although data can be kept encrypted in servers, the user does not have the ability to decide whom the data are shared with. Technically this is linked to the problem of who owns the data encryption keys required to decrypt the data. Currently, cloud service providers, rather than users, have full rights to the key. In practical terms this makes the users lose full control over their data. Trust and uptake of these applications can be increased by allowing patients to feel in control of their data, generally stored in cloud-based services.

Objective:This paper addresses this security challenge by providing the user a way of controlling encryption keys independently of the cloud service provider. We provide a secure and usable system that enables a patient to share health information with doctors and specialists.

Thilakanathan, D., Calvo, R. A., Chen, S., Nepal, S., & Glozier, N. (2016). Facilitating secure sharing of personal health data in the cloud. JMIR medical informatics, 4(2), e15.

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