All SurveyGizmo data is encrypted "at rest" at disk level. If you are looking for a further layer of security, the Response Data Encryption feature allows you to encrypt data at the application level. We recommend using this encryption feature if you are collecting sensitive information such as PHI (personal health information).
Don't confuse Response Data Encryption with secure (SSL) share links. Using SSL share links will ensure your link is encrypted and will secure data while being transferred to our servers*.
*All data in transit to the SurveyGizmo survey tier (https://www.surveygizmo.com) via ssl, is sha256 With RSA Encryption.
Enabling and Disabling Data Encryption
Data Encryption cannot be turned on or off once a survey has collected data. If data has previously been collected in a particular survey, the option to turn this feature on is not available.
Please be sure you want to encrypt your data before clicking this option. The Response Data Encryption option will be available per survey for Account Administrators only. To enable encryption, within your survey:
- Click on Tools > Survey Settings.
- Scroll to find the Encrypt Response Data section.
- Click Yes, Encrypt my response data. To disable encryption, select No, don't Encrypt response data. Keep in mind that once your survey has collected data, this feature will be locked down.
- Remember to Save Settings when you're finished.
Voila! Response Data Encryption is now turned on. Now, make sure to Customize your link to use secure SSL so that response data is encrypted when transmitted.
Surveys with Data Encryption that have collected data cannot have encryption turned off. If you were just testing the setting out and collected data, you can make a copy of your survey and then you can disable encryption.
The below features do not work when data encryption is turned on in your survey:
- Summary Report Statistics (Sum, Standard Dev, Min, Max, etc.) - Works in Standard Report
- Public Shared Standard Reports - The only privacy settings available for shared Standard Reports on encrypted surveys are Password Protected and Only Logged-in SurveyGizmo Users. Learn more about these settings.
- Data Cleaning Tool
- Star Rating Grid Questions in Summary Reports - The Star Rating Grid question will only report a response count in Summary Reports as aggregate functions such as Average and Standard Dev do not work when Encryption is on. You can still analyze your data in this way on your own by exporting your raw data via our CSV/EXCEL or SPSS exports. - Works in Standard Report
- Continuous Sum Questions in Summary Reports - The Continuous Sum question will only report a response count in Summary Reports as aggregate functions such as Average and Standard Dev do not work when Encryption is on. You can still analyze your data in this way on your own by exporting your raw data via our CSV/EXCEL or SPSS exports. - Works in Standard Report
- Slider List Questions in Summary Reports - The Slider List question will only report a response count in Summary Reports as aggregate functions such as Average and Standard Dev do not work when Encryption is on. You can still analyze your data in this way on your own by exporting your raw data via our CSV/EXCEL or SPSS exports. - Works in Standard Report
- Segmented Quotas
- Filtering Open Text Fields with Numeric Values in the Legacy Summary Report
- Filtering Summary off of Hidden Values in Legacy Summary Report
- Using the 'contains' operator in CSV/Export filter conditions
- Searching in Individual Responses tab for specific Open Text answers
- Response Tagging
- Show Checkboxes Single Column in CSV/Excel Export
What level of encryption does SurveyGizmo use?
We provide 256-bit encryption for your data. This is extremely secure and is used by health care companies and even the military to secure their data. All backups in our system will be 256-bit encrypted as well.
What in my survey will be affected when data encryption is turned on?
When you have encryption turned on, the application will be noticeably slower. This is a side effect of encrypting and decrypting your data. We cannot speed up the application if encryption is turned on. Additionally, secure encryption prevents some features from working (because the encryption makes it impossible to decrypt).
Can I turn project encryption on for all surveys in my account?
Project Data Encryption must be enabled on a survey-by-survey basis. Once you have collected data in an encrypted survey, encryption cannot be enabled/disabled.
— Bri Hillmer on 11/16/2016
@Ted: Thanks for this detailed feedback! We've been making improvements to various features with respect to encrypted data.
It sounds like it's been some time since you used the option to encrypt survey data. Let us know if you run into any specific deal breakers.
I'll also make a note of your suggestion for a warning for discussion with our development team; I think this is a great idea!
SurveyGizmo Customer Experience Team