One of the ways that Synapse governance supports responsible data sharing is through user account types.

Each account type is associated with a different set of user privileges. A user must have a specific account type in order to perform certain actions in Synapse.

There are four user account types in Synapse:

Anonymous User

Anyone can browse Synapse anonymously to review the platform features and public resources, including the catalog of public projects, files, and tables. However, some (non-public) data is completely hidden from anonymous view. Anonymous users cannot create projects in Synapse, upload or download data, add wiki content, or comment in a discussion forums.

Registered User

Registered users can create projects and wikis. They can collaborate with other registered users and create Synapse teams. Registered users can also download publicly available data and, if they fulfill project-specific Conditions for Use, they can also access controlled data.

Become a registered user.

Certified User

Certified users have access to full Synapse functionality, including the ability to upload files and tables as well as create folders. To become certified, you must take a short quiz about the Synapse Commons Data Use Procedure. This activity ensures that you understand the rules and policies that govern data sharing on Synapse. The quiz is 15 questions and should take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete.

Become a certified user.

Validated Users

Registered users can apply to have their user profile validated. A Synapse user with a validated profile is eligible to request access to specific controlled access tier data, including mHealth data.

To validate your profile, you will need to establish your identity by providing a combination of profile information, your ORCID, a signed Synapse Pledge, and an external credential. These steps enable greater transparency within the research community, promoting a reciprocal relationship between you and participants as data donors. You will need a validated profile prior to requesting access to Bridge data.

Become a validated user

In your Synapse profile, click your name/picture on upper banner of the screen, then select Settings. Use the links in the Profile Validation box to:

  1. Confirm your user profile is complete including your full name, current affiliation, and city/country.

  2. Link to your ORCID profile. Make sure your profile is public and populate it with at least one piece of information about yourself in addition to your name.

  3. Sign and submit the Synapse Pledge.

  4. Submit recent identity attestation documentation. This document must be current within the past month. Acceptable forms of documentation, in English, are:

  • A letter from a signing official on letterhead attesting to your identity (template here). Note that you cannot serve as your own signing official.  OR

  • A notarized letter attesting to your identity (template here) OR

  • A copy of your professional license (e.g., a photocopy of your medical license). Note that a copy of a work or university identification badge is not an accepted form of identity attestation documentation.

You will receive a notification email when your profile has been validated and a badge will appear on your Synapse profile homepage.

Summary of User Privileges by Account Type

The table below provides a summary of the specific actions allowed at each account type.

 

Anonymous

Registered

Certified

Validated

View public wiki pages

X

X

X

X

Browse public project catalog

X

X

X

X

Browse public file catalog

X

X

X

X

Create a project

 

X

X

X

Add wiki content

 

X

X

X

Download files/tables*

 

X

X

X

Upload files/tables

 

 

X

 

Create folders

 

 

X

 

Add provenance

 

 

X

 

Upload Docker containers

 

 

X

 

Request access to specific controlled access data**

 

 

X

X

*Your ability to download a file or table depends on your Synapse user type, local sharing settings, AND fulfilling the conditions for use, if any, of the file or table.

**Click Request Access on controlled access data to see whether you are required to be certified and/or validated for data access.

User Responsibilities

Regardless of your user status, you are solely responsible for your actions on Synapse. You are required to abide by the Synapse Terms and Conditions of Use and all policies and principles described in Synapse Governance. We strongly encourage you to familiarize yourself with these documents. Please contact the Synapse Access and Compliance Team (act@synapse.org) if you have any questions.