There are various models of access:
Research Data Centers (RDCs) require researchers to travel to their site for access under tightly controlled conditions. Examples of RDCs include the Census Bureau Research Data Centers, including the one at UCB/UCLA, the NCHS Research Data Centers in Hyattsville, MD and Atlanta, the MiCDA Data Enclave, and the BLS Onsite Researcher Program in Washington, DC
Virtual RDCs provide secure systems for remote, online access to confidential data. The Virtual RDC at Cornell provides access to synthetic “statistically approximate” data as a means of protecting confidentiality. The NORC Data Enclave provides remote access to CMS Medicare Claims data using technologies that provide audit trails for session and prevent downloading, cut-and-paste and other functions that might lead to disclosure
Intermediaries: Some providers require that researcher work through their staff to perform analysis the California Health Interview Survey either by using their programming services or providing dummy data files so users can develop their own code and email it to the center.
Provision of Data for Use at UC Davis: Upon approval of IRB and signed data contract, a number of producers provide data for use at researchers’ home institutions. Examples include, restricted use data from NCES, restricted files for Add-Health, NLS, HRS, and PSID.
Many of these datasets are described on our site.