International focus on negotiating power of Dutch education with big tech

20 January 2023 - SURF and the educational institutions consider secure education that meets our public values very important. That is why we join forces in the Netherlands and SURF, in collaboration with partners, enters into discussions with large and small vendors, within and outside Europe, to reach solid agreements.

Drie studenten achter een laptop

Protection of user data

Through SURF, the members make joint agreements with ICT and content suppliers regarding the supply and purchase of products and services. Conducting Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIAs) is a part of this.

It follows from laws and regulations in Europe that vendors must take measures to protect users' data. From the GDPR, a DPIA is necessary to identify privacy risks to users. Those DPIAs may reveal risks that need to be resolved before safe use of products and services can be made. In such a case, we engage with the vendor to see if we can come to a solution together.

Talking to suppliers gets results

By joining forces in the sector, (large) tech companies are willing to sit down with us, improve and adapt their products to remove risks. This proves that you can achieve great results with collaboration. We do this to ensure that Dutch education and research can use ICT solutions that are as good and safe as possible and that meet our public values.

Proud of collaboration

SURF is proud of the fact that we achieve good results in this aspect. And our approach is noticed internationally. The New York Times even published an article about it on 18 January (behind login).