What are your data responsibilities at UQ?

1 April 2021

Every UQ staff member deals with data. As an institution, and in our respective roles, data is core to what we do. It informs decisions, it shapes the way we work, and allows for UQ as an organisation to grow, develop and better understand and respond to its staff and students’ needs. 

With such vast amounts of data collected and used, it is important to be mindful of the quality of data we are creating and/or using.  

Poor quality data can result in incorrect or detrimental business decisions. In the same vein, misunderstanding the data’s importance or handling it inappropriately can lead to negative cyber security implications. 

Common data terms 

It is important that as UQ staff, we all speak a common language. For example, the words ‘data’ and ‘information’ are commonly used interchangeably. While the distinction between the two may be subtle, depending on the context, it may also be significant. 

Having a common understanding of data terms allows us to communicate about and work with data effectively and better understand UQ’s data landscape.  

Your data responsibilities 

We all have a part to play in UQ’s data landscape.  

Every staff member has some common data responsibilities, which not only help protect data and meet legislative and policy requirements, but also increase the value and optimisation of UQ’s data.  

Data responsibilities include: 

  • The purpose of the data use (e.g. research purposes, or a business need). 

  • The type of data and the Information Security Classification. 

  • Any relevant regulatory requirements. 

  • Handle information securely and do not share it with unauthorised persons.  

  • Report data breaches (or suspected data breaches) to IT Support.

  • Retain records in line with legislative requirements. Records of work activities need to be retained. Visit the Records Management webpage for further guidance. 

  • Dispose of data appropriately. Consider the information security classification when disposing of data. If it is SENSITIVE or PROTECTED, ensure it is securely disposed of. For example, if it is a physical document, place it in a locked document disposal bin or shred it; if it is digital, clear it from your trash bin. 

Depending on your position, you may have specific data roles such as “Information Creator”, “Information Consumer”, “Information Steward”, etc. These roles have additional data responsibilities. Learn more about the different data roles and their responsibilities

By being mindful of your data responsibilities, you are helping protect and optimise the value of UQ’s data, which in turn enables UQ to best support its community.  

Learn more about data at UQ at https://data.uq.edu.au/#data-and-information-essentials