THeCS (Trusted Healthcare Services)

The Trusted Healthcare Services project investigates and develops novel breakthrough security and privacy mechanisms, which enhances trust in ICT technologies. Although the application of the developed technology is very wide, the project focuses on e-Health (electronic health services over the internet) where considerable concerns about privacy and security of all that data that we share or submit are present. The lack of trust was the reason for the Dutch Senate not to pass the bill for the proposed nationwide Electronic Patient Records system even though many millions were spent building the system. But it is not only with nationwide systems; in every communication regarding our health we want our data to be secured.

In particular, the project focuses on three important scientific ICT challenges. Firstly, we investigate how to measure, indicate and enhance trust in services driven by ICT technologies as well as reliability of data. This research question is driven by demand in the eHealth domain, where the lack of trust in ICT technologies creates a barrier for patients but also for healthcare providers to use ICT technologies and novel services. Next to that in many e-Health systems medical data is not collected by healthcare providers in a controlled medical environment using certified medical devices, but by patients at their homes without any supervision. Therefore, the healthcare professionals will need to place greater trust in information that patients report.

Secondly, the project investigates and develops technologies to automatically detect and prevent leakage of sensitive information. Security and privacy breaches, which occur more and more often, result in significant monetary loss for companies and organizations. Next to that the new data protection regulations in EU requires breach notification. Therefore detection of potential data leakages is of utmost importance.

The third ICT challenge, which the project addresses, is related to operations in encrypted domain. There, the project develops new breakthrough technology that enables privacy-preserving data mining and social networking focusing on their efficiency and applicability to real-life scenarios. This research direction is motivated by the need for privacy in healthcare domain that deals with a lot of sensitive data. Patients are concerned that their sensitive data (e.g. DNA or data related to mental illnesses, AIDS, etc.) is not disclosed, while on the other hand the public wants to allow medical researchers to use as much data as possible from Electronic Health Records to achieve the next level of evidence-based medicine.

Project Details

  • Project leader: Milan Petkovic
  • Partners: Eindhoven University of Technology, Tilburg University, Delft University of Technology, Roessingh Research and Development (RRD), University of Twente, Roessingh Research and Development (RRD), Waag Society, Roessingh Hospitaal (Het Roessingh Centrum voor Revalidatie), TNO, Capgemini, Irdeto, Philips Research, JC Groep/JC Health ICT B.V., Lance ICT Group
  • Link:link
  • Category: Healthcare

Project deliverables

  • 8 conference papers
  • 9 software
  • 7 user studies
  • 5 PhD theses



Research and development

Lance ICT Group pays great attention to research and development with innovation as a top priority. With Protecs the Lance ICT Group particularly focusses on chemical safety in case of the presence of hazardous substances and machine safety.

The developments in microchips are fast, pushing the thought of the Internet of Things closer. The ‘Internet of Things”, the communication between instrumented systems, high tech sensors, and social media, creates enormous amounts of data. The unexpected hidden patterns in data provide us with new insights. Combined data lead to causal relations, enabling predictive powers, supporting the decision making process. The value of rough “big data” is hidden, but by smart analysis it can lead to conclusions applicable to all domains of our society. Handling big data requires innovative breakthroughs in advanced ICT-science and technology, including machine learning, data mining, visualisation, semantics, databases, software engineering and data security.

Since the smart phone has been adopted in the chain of information, it turns out that security and safe use are not up to par. Modern cars for instance are equipped with electronics, enabling the car to communicate through internet with the dealer or owner. The connection to the internet allowing to influence the cars’ electronic settings from a distance with smart phone, tablet or PC. These provisions are rendered unsafe, because unauthorised access and manipulation is possible.

Therefore, security as well as privacy and transparency are important conditions for users to share information on the Internet.

Lance ICT Group has a 20-year experience in the field of functional safety in its 25-year existence. Our experience focusses on chemical and machine safety issues. The analysis of data gained from security loops, containing sensors, logic and actuators, playing a major role. Safety provisions mostly consist of these security loops. Protecs enables safety provision management en supplies the user with information about the current safety of the system.

One of the first research projects under "Research and Development" was commissioned by the European Organization for Testing and Certification (EOTC), including ITC The Hague, to develop a "Reliability Data Collection System" (RDCS). After acceptance of the RDCS system, obtaining fail data from the industry turned out to be a bottleneck. Making such data available was not possible because of doubt about safe usage of the data. Alternative being to turn to the suppliers of these instrumented systems for obtaining the needed fail data.

Lance ICT Group collaborates with the Eindhoven University of Technology in the valorisation project THECS Healthcare of COMMIT. Goal is finding solutions to various problems by working together and channelling knowledge and experience. Especially issues concerning data reliability, obtained through the internet, through sensors, logic and executive devices. The cancellation of the Dutch national Electronic Patient Dossier teaches us that safety is indispensable to successfully applying these high-tech sensors. The technical side focusses on using API’s (Application Programming Interface) and container technology ensuring a safer use of these techniques.