CaraSpace provides a safe, secure place for researchers to store and analyse their data, while ensuring that privacy-sensitive data remains protected.

It is a secure private cloud accessible only via an encrypted Virtual Private Network (VPN) through a firewall and use of a YubiKey® for two-factor authentication.

CaraSpace is available to an individual researcher, research team or organization needing to store sensitive personal information (e.g. health records). This information must have been legally obtained and proof of the authority to store and or use the information must be provided.

car·a·pace  noun  something regarded as a protective or defensive covering (Oxford English Dictionary)

“CaraSpace is an extremely useful tool for the Praxis Spinal Cord Institute to facilitate safe and controlled data access to the Rick Hansen Spinal Cord Injury Registry. It allows us to provide record level data access to a broad range of researchers, clinicians, persons with lived experience of spinal cord injury and other interested parties, in order to further research, quality improvement and advocacy efforts.”

Suzanne Humphreys, MSc, Manager, Data Services, Praxis Spinal Cord Institute

Security features

  • Firewall protection. No Internet access is permitted within CaraSpace
  • Researchers connect using encrypted VPN (Virtual Private Network) client software, ensuring privacy of the connection
  • Rather than relying on insecure passwords, authentication uses Yubikey™ tokens which provide two factor authentication (something you have; the token, and something you know; the passphrase)
  • All data are stored on encrypted disks
  • Each project is partitioned — users see only their own project data
  • The option to make geographic restrictions for users (e.g. allow access only to users within Canada)
  • Import/export restrictions are configurable on a per-project basis
  • All machines run anti-virus software
  • Continuous monitoring of all systems, network, and imports/exports

Researcher features

  • Access to over 60 well-provisioned virtual machines
  • Additional high-capacity machines offer greater speed and memory for long running jobs
  • A large suite of analytical software
  • Worry free management of data backup, antivirus protection, and other related computer maintenance
  • Remote access from any computer or operating system
  • Ability to share data and code between project members within CaraSpace

General features

  • Regular daily backup of all data (plus encrypted offsite backups)
  • All data is stored on fast SSD (solid state disk) based storage
  • Central administration means that accounts and/or projects can be disabled or suspended at project closure, ethics expiry, or in the event of a privacy incident
  • Redundant and fault tolerant systems maintain greater than 99.9% uptime


CaraSpace charges start at $2,500 per year for up to three users and vary slightly depending on the resources required by the research project.

The minimum billing increment is three months. Typically, the first two years are charged initially, with extensions charged for as needed.

Description Fee
Additional user $500 per user
Reassign user $100 per switch
Backup files recovery $500 per request
Lost or damaged YubiKey® $100 per YubiKey®



The fee rate of additional CaraSpace access beyond the first two years depends on the previous year’s average net data usage and additional resources required (as described above).

If the average net space for the data exceeds 500 GB in the previous year, CaraSpace access can be extended at higher rates with greater data limits. 

CaraSpace Access Fee Net Data Limit
$2,500 per year 500 GB
$3,000 per year 1 TB (1,000 GB)
$3,500 per year 1.5 TB (1,500 GB)


Please note that the net data space is the total project data space less the Read Only DATA folder.

If you are interested in using CaraSpace to store your data, please contact: and put CaraSpace in the subject line.