Data Availability Policy

While the INSDC databases hold public data, there are several levels of data availability which control access to these data. These are described below.

Status name Causes Implications
Public
Data are submitted with no request for
confidential hold prior to publication
or have reached an owner-agreed public
release date.
Data are fully available.
Confidential
Data owner requires and indicates that
confidentiality is required until a
release date or publication in the
literature, whichever comes earlier.
Data are not available publicly through
any means. A data release date is
recorded for the data, which are
subsequently and automatically released
as Public on reaching this date
or when cited online or in a
publication prior to this date. In
the event that a release date must be
extended, data owners are required to
follow the submission database’s
guidelines on how to extend the release
of their data. Alternatively, please
contact ENA at least ten working
days before the currently recorded
release date.
Suppressed
(1) Data are found by the owner to be
incorrectly annotated or contaminated
with no immediate opportunity on the
part of the owner to be updated.
(2) Data owners realise after
sequences have been released that they
failed to request a confidential
status, either at the time of
submission, or within the period
between completion of submission
processing and the date on which the
submission is normally made available
to the public (this time period can
vary among the INSDC members).
Data are removed where possible from
direct search tools (such as text and
sequence similarity search) but remain
available by accession number
Replaced
Data owners generate new data under
new accession identifiers that
directly replace existing data; this
is expected to be rare since
replacement data normally use the
existing accession identifiers for the
records that they replace.

Data are removed where possible from
direct search tools (such as text and
sequence similarity search) but remain
available by accession number. Where
possible, look-up by original accession
identifiers leads to a re-direct to new
records available under the new
accession identifiers.
Killed
(1) The submitter has requested a
Confidential status or an
extension to an existing release date,
but the ENA, or their submissions
brokering collaborator, has failed to
apply the appropriate release date
correctly.
(2) Data are found to have been
submitted to the databases without the
permission of the rightful owner; this
is expected to be extremely rare and
requires formal institutional contact
with the submitting institution.
Data are not directly available
publicly from INSDC partners through
any means. However, because the data
will have been distributed previously
as Public, the INSDC partners cannot
exercise any control on the resultant
use of the data by third parties.