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Secure Computing Environment

The Secure Computing Environment (SCE) provides researchers with a platform that mitigates the risks of working with electronic personal health information (ePHI) and other types of high risk data that are subject to regulatory or compliance requirements.  SCE eases the burden on the researcher of having to configure and assure that their computational work environment has been configured with the appropriate security controls needed to minimize the risk of exposing high risk data. These data include, but are not limited to: HIPAA, FISMA, Personal Information Protection Act of Illinois and other grant specific regulations.

SCE is a virtual machine (VM) service. We provide on-campus VMs as well as VMs hosted on the Azure Cloud. ACER staff provides services for resource sizing, user configuration, and software installation.

Recent clients include the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) and the UIC Cancer Center.

Getting access to SCE Heading link

ACER provides provisioning, on-boarding, and administration services for secure computing environments at UIC. The requester must adhere to the rules listed below.

  • ACER only provides the secure computing platform but the user acts as the data custodian for their sensitive data.
  • The requestor must read and adhere to the SCE Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) mentioned here.
  • ACER will not provide admin-level access to users. Any changes to our policy should be requested through sce@uic.edu.
  • Important: Requests for new resources on the Azure Cloud are on temporary hold until January 5, 2023.

Additional information on the costs and available hardware configurations for our on-premises and Azure resources can be found by clicking on the appropriate tab below. The prices displayed in the tables may not reflect the latest rates from Azure. Current rates can be obtained by visiting the Azure Pricing Calculator.

Monthly Charges

Available hardware configurations for the on-premises SCE.
Level CPU and Memory CPU and Memory
1 1 CPU, 2 GB RAM $39.00
2 1 CPU, 4 GB RAM $63.00
3 2 CPU, 8 GB RAM $111.00
4 4 CPUs, 16 GB RAM $207.00
5 4 CPUs, 24 GB RAM $303.00
6 4 CPUs, 32 GB RAM $399.00
7 6 CPUs, 48 GB RAM $591.00
8 6 CPUs, 64 GB RAM $783.00
  • All prices include 40 GB disk space. Additional storage is available for $0.25 per gigabyte per month plus $0.25 per gigabyte per month for backup.

CPU-only VM Hourly Charges

Available hardware configurations for Standard Compute (CPU-only) SCE VM on the Azure Cloud.
Note: Requests for new resources on the Azure Cloud are on temporary hold until January 5, 2023.
Level CPU and Memory Cost/Hour: Linux OS Cost/Hour: Windows OS
1 1 CPU, 3.5 GB RAM $0.073 $0.126
2 1 CPU, 14 GB RAM $0.185 $0.264
3 2 CPU, 7 GB RAM $0.146 $0.252
4 4 CPUs, 14 GB RAM $0.293 $0.504
5 4 CPUs, 28 GB RAM $0.371 $0.528
6 8 CPUs, 28 GB RAM $0.585 $1.008
7 8 CPUs, 56 GB RAM $0.741 $1.056

GPU-accelerated VM Hourly Charges

Available hardware configurations for GPU-accelerated SCE VM on the Azure Cloud.
Note: Requests for new resources on the Azure Cloud are on temporary hold until January 5, 2023.
Level GPU Card and Memory CPU and Memory Cost/Hour: Linux OS Cost/Hour: Windows OS
1 NVIDIA T4, 16 GB RAM 4 CPU, 28 GB RAM $0.631 $0.815
2 NVIDIA M60 8 GB RAM 12 CPU, 112 GB RAM $1.140 $1.692
3 NVIDIA V100, 16 GB RAM 6 CPU, 112 GB RAM $3.978 $4.254

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