Getting started in myDATA


myDATA is a one-stop-shop for managing research projects in the DataLab


Activate your account

Registration: after signing up with your organisational email address, you will be sent two emails

  1. Welcome to myDATA, from ABS
  2. Activate your ABS account, from Okta 

Activation: Click the 'Activate ABS Account' button in the Okta email to complete the account activation process. 

Troubleshooting: If you don't receive the email within an hour, check your spam folder.

Expiration: The activation email link is valid for 7 days. If you miss this window, contact for a new activation email.  

Dashboard Access: Once authenticated, logging in will redirect you to the myDATA dashboard. Visit Navigating the Dashboard for next steps.


  • Personal email addresses (for example @hotmail) cannot be verified, use your organisation email address.
  • If your organisation is not registered with myDATA, please contact to arrange next steps. 
  • During registration you can skip Registration Centre User ID if you do not have this ID or cannot remember it. 
  • Your DataLab account will be created by the ABS once you have completed training requirements and have been approved to join a project proposal.

Open the Okta activation email and select 'Activate ABS Account', the link will open in your default browser.  

Select Password 'Set up' first. 

Set up security methods

After setting up your password, your browser will prompt you to complete the remaining security method.

Before proceeding, download the Google authenticator App on your mobile device. 

The App Developer is Google LLC. This is a free App that does not have in App purchases. Credit card details are not required.

Apple App Store

Google Play Store

google authenticator logo

Now you have the Google authenticator App on your mobile device. 

Return to your computer browser session with the remaining set up security method step

Select Google Authenticator 'Set up'.

Set up Google authenticator

The link will open a page similar to below. Follow the prompts using your Google Authenticator App on your mobile device, tap the + icon and then select scan barcode. 

Scan barcode

After scanning the barcode you will be prompted to enter the code from the Google Authenticator App. Enter the code and verify. 

Follow the on-screen prompts which repeat your security settings

  1. Registered email
  2. Password
  3. Google authenticator app code

Now you have activated, and you will see a 'Your account is almost ready!' page. 

After a few minutes, refreshing your browser will display your registered profile. Check over the fields, update if needed and then Submit.

You are now activated in the myDATA user portal and will see the Dashboard.

Navigating the dashboard

myDATA Dashboard

There are a number of useful features on the Dashboard

  1. ABS and myDATA logos will take you to the corresponding home page.
  2. myDATA breadcrumb aids navigation. You can use the breadcrumb to jump through pages.
  3. My Account is where you can log out of the myDATA system. If you are inactive for more than 30 minutes you will be automatically logged out. 
  4. My profile tile will display your registered information. You can update most fields at any time. If you need to change your email you will need to contact
  5. My organisation tile shows which organisation you are attached to.
  6. My onboarding tile is where you can enrol and cancel your DataLab Safe Researcher training, review your training session details, and find your pre-training reading material, as well as access onboarding forms/quiz after training is completed.
  7. My projects tile is where you can create, edit and submit a new DataLab project proposal. As well as track your project proposals progress. You will see all project proposals you have been added to on this tile. Only the Project editor can edit detail within the project proposal.
  8. Data catalogue tile shows what detailed microdata is available for your project proposal submission. You can sort and search for data in this view to understand what data selection is appropriate for your project proposal. 
  9. Change Requests is where you can request draft and submit project proposal changes. 

Training and onboarding

Enrolling in a training session

From the My onboarding tile, select the Enrol in training button. 

Enrol in training

Select the magnifying glass to bring up the list of available sessions, and choose your preferred session by ticking the box on the left. 

Confirm your action by clicking Select.

list of available sessions

You will be shown a preview of the session details. 

Click ‘Submit’ and then ‘Ok’ to confirm. The Enrolled training table will now be updated with your session date and time.

You will receive an email with the training session details, including a Zoom link for a virtual session, and physical training address for face-to-face.

If you need to Cancel your enrolment, select the drop down arrow to the right of the table row and click Cancel and then Confirm.

To re-enrol, repeat Enrol in training steps above.

cancel enrolment
Waitlisting - If no sessions are suitable

If the training sessions listed are not suitable, you can elect to be placed on a waitlist. Click ‘No session suitable’ button.

no session suitable button

Check back periodically to see what new training sessions are available. 

When a session is advertised that fits your schedule then cancel the waitlisting enrolment and enrol in the training session.

After enrolling in a DataLab Safe Researcher training session, you will automatically have access to the pre-training reading material. 

This is available from the Forms and quiz view of the My onboarding table. 

forms and quiz button

Onboarding forms are only available after training is complete.

You will be notified by email when your onboarding forms and quiz are available for you to download. You will find these in the same place as the pre-training reading material - the Forms and quiz view of the My onboarding table.

Within the Forms and quiz section, you are able to download your document/s, click the arrow to the right of the row, and select View.

download onboarding forms

Select the file and save it to your computer. 

When the forms and quiz are complete, return to for review. 

If completed correctly your table view will update with further details, for example signed date.

Development is underway to upload forms and complete forms online from the user portal. We expect this functionality will be available at the end of 2024, or early 2025. 

Thank you for being patient while we complete this development. 

DataLab project proposal

Creating and editing

Any portal user who meets the following criteria can create a Project proposal,

The researcher creating the project proposal will automatically be set as the Project editor. The Project editor is the only person who can edit the project proposal. All researchers added to the project proposal will be able to read, but not edit. 

The Project editor is usually the Project lead, however the role to draft, edit, submit and maintain the project proposal can be delegated to another researcher, if this best suits your research team.

The role of Project editor can be passed to another researcher when the project proposal is in Draft status. After the project proposal moves to Active status, then a change request will need to be submitted to change the Project editor. If the Project editor who is leaving the role is not listed as a analyst or discussant on the project proposal, they will no longer be able to read/access the project proposal until the new Project editor adds them to the project proposal. 

If the Project lead assigns responsibility to a Project editor, they are also agreeing this Project editor has the same responsibilities, delegations and authority on the project proposal. 

Draft, Submit, Feedback

Project proposals start in a Draft status, and when all fields have been filled the project proposal can then be submitted to the ABS for review. At this point the project proposal shifts to Submitted status and cannot be edited by the Project editor. 

ABS teams will review your content to ensure the project meets requirements. Sometimes there will need to be changes or more detail provided. If this is required, feedback will be added to the Project proposal and a information box will display at the top of each project proposal page. 

Project proposal feedback message

Feedback Acknowledgment: When feedback is given, acknowledge it.  Once acknowledged, the information box won't appear anymore.  

Reply Option: If necessary, you can reply to the feedback. 

Project Proposal Cycle: The project proposal goes through a cycle of drafts, submissions, and feedback until it meets its intended purpose. 


While the Project editor is drafting the project proposal saving will happen automatically when: 

  1. moving to the next page (Save & Next button), or
  2. after 5 minutes of inactivity.

If changes are made and the Previous button is selected - changes will not be saved!

When the autosave has run after inactivity a information box will display.

Autosaved message

Time out

If myDATA is inactive for 30 minutes or more you session will time out. Log in again using your email, password and authentication code. 

Project proposal

The project proposal is grouped into parts

  • Access considerations
  • Project details
  • Project objectives
  • People
  • Data
  • Output
  • Attachments
  • Submit

You can only navigate through the project proposal one page at a time, from the Previous or Save & Next buttons. These are located at the top and bottom of each page. 

Each project proposal field has been set up to capture specific requirements, and may have response questions that are mandatory for your situation. 

If you do not fill in a mandatory field, when you try to move to the next page a warning box will appear highlighting what is missing. You can use the link in the warning box to jump to the field and complete what is required. 

When the project proposal has been submitted the project proposal will move to the My projects - Pending table and is locked from editing. 

If you need to recall the project back to draft, please email

mandatory field missing

Adding people

People can only be added 

  1. from organisations with an active Responsible Officer Undertaking
  2. after the person has successfully activated their user profile. 

From the People page of the project proposal you will first need to add the organisation/s to the Stakeholders section. This is broken down into

  • Lead organisation: usually the organisation from which the Project Lead belongs to
  • Member organisations: drives the project researchers who can belong to the project proposal
  • Government organisation sponsor: lists out the Government organisations, if the project is being sponsored

When the organisation/s have been added, you will be able to add Project researchers. 

After adding people to the Project researchers table, you can Edit or Remove Project researchers from each row action menu.


Data catalogue

From the Dashboard there is a Data catalogue tile which displays all the available Data packages. 

Further details describing the Data packages or Datasets are available from the action menu, to the right side of each row. Or you can jump directly to the Data package description by selecting the Data package name. Further web content can be accessed from the Product information link (if provided).  

The catalogue aims to help you with your data selection before starting a project proposal. 

When it is known what data will be required, take note of the Data asset and Dataset categories, as these are used to filter data selections within the project proposal. 


Adding data to the project proposal 

When adding data to the project proposal you must focus your selection by selecting

  • Data asset
  • Dataset

This will refine what Data packages are then displayed for selection. 

When selecting the Data package you may be asked for a Justification. This is a mandatory field and your selection will not proceed until provided. 

You can select all Data packages within the dataset category, or one to many Data packages by ticking the corresponding box. A selection must be made before you can proceed. 

Data can be removed from the Standard DataLab Product table by clicking the action menu on that row and selecting Remove.  By confirming your action, the Dataset will be removed. 

Selecting a data package

Data Linkage Request

If a new Data Linkage Request is needed, select the Add button from the corresponding table. This will present a input form, follow the prompts and then submit the form. 

When the project proposal is submitted, the ABS teams will review your request and follow up to seek additional information. 

While the project proposal is in Draft status, you can edit or remove the entry from the action menu. After the project proposal is Active you cannot edit or remove, and contact will need to be made with for either action.

After the project proposal is Active, your new data linkage request may still be under development. Progress can be monitored from the Project proposal overview. 

Other data

If you require data not covered by existing catalogues, including subsets of existing data and requests to load other un-linked data (including aggregate data) to your DataLab project, you will need to provide as much detail as possible. 

ABS strongly encourages the use of the PLIDA and BLADE Modular products. These provides optimal flexibility for analysing data and are typically delivered to projects in a timely manner than a customised subset.

Customised subsets of a PLIDA dataset should only be requested when there are extenuating circumstances preventing the provision of the corresponding modules in the PLIDA Modular Product.

If you have any questions, please contact


For now, attachments must be sent to The ABS admins will attach the file to your project proposal and you will see the file from this page. 

Upcoming development will provide the ability for portal users to upload attachments from the myDATA user portal. This content will be updated when functionality is released. 

Change requests

From the Change request tile any project researcher can request two types of change for their Active project:  

  • Organisations and People: The requester can add new organisations and researchers or remove organisations and researchers from their project.
  • Project Details: The requester can change the project details including the project title, scope, data, objectives and outcomes, ethics and sensitive data sections and the project end date 

It can take up to 20 minutes for the change template to be generated. There can be only one change request of each type in draft or pending status.

When the change template has been generated it will be available in the My Change Requests - Draft table, and only the project editor can make changes. All active project researchers will be able to view the change, but not edit the content. 

Change requests go through the same cycle as the project proposal. When the change has been approved the updates will be made to the active project proposal.

 If you need to make changes to a change request that has been submitted, email (citing project number and title).

New Data Linkage Requests can be submitted from a change request, but an existing data linkage request cannot be edited. To edit or remove a data linkage request email

Project closure

Email reminders are sent to all active project researchers on the project, at:

  • 2 months from expected end date
  • 1 month from expected end date.

At this point the Project editor can choose to 

  • extend the expected end date from a change request
  • confirm the project is closing

After confirming the project is closing we have some survey questions to help inform our future development. Thank you in advance for providing your responses.

If project closure is confirmed, we will remove access in DataLab the following day, and your Project proposal will move to My projects - Closed.

Project overview

The project proposal overview provides a snapshot of who and what can be accessed, contact details for researchers, and status for 

  • project
  • researchers
  • data packages 
  • change requests

Access in DataLab to any of the above items only happens when the status is Active. 

Data Linkage Requests develop independently from the Project Proposal, and can also be tracked from the Overview page. When their status has been set to Approved the data will be added to your Project Proposal. When the Data package is listed as Active you will have access in DataLab. 

To open a project proposal overview select the Project ID link from the My projects table. Or when you are viewing the project proposal content, at the top right of the page select, 'go to Project overview'. 

The project proposal overview shows different status views for Researchers and Data tables. Toggle between views by selecting the type of status you want to see:

  • Active
  • Removed
  • Pending

Do not talk or share!

Only Active researchers can discuss unvetted data from this project.  

Researchers listed on the Removed or Pending tables are NOT allowed to discuss until they are listed as ACTIVE on the project proposal. 

Project proposal statuses

Portal user account

  • Not yet active: portal user has completed registration, but has not activated their account. 
  • Active: portal user has activated their account, and can access the myDATA Dashboard. 

Portal user DataLab readiness

  • Training required: portal user must select a DataLab Safe Researcher training session.
  • Enrolled: portal user has successfully enrolled into a DataLab Safe Researcher training session.
  • Forms pending: portal user has attended DataLab Safe Researcher training and now must complete the forms (Individual Undertaking etc.) and quiz.
  • Onboarding complete: portal user has completed DataLab Safe Researcher training, all forms and passed the quiz.

The project proposal brings together the scope, data and people into one application. The project goes through the following status

  • Draft: Project editor is forming the content.
  • Submitted: ABS is reviewing content. ABS may supply feedback and reset project proposal to Draft, if content does not meet intended purpose. 
  • Under assessment: ABS governance teams are assessing the project against the 5 safes framework to support the approval request.
  • Pending approval: the project proposal and supporting assessment are sent to approvers for decision.
  • Approved: approval has been granted.
  • Active: access is now available in DataLab.


My password isn't working

If your password is not working, try the 'Forgot password link' available below the password box. This will send you an email. 

Select the link 'Enter a verification code instead', and from the email 'Account password reset', locate the code and enter it to your browser session. 

You can now create a new password. 

One time code not appearing on authenticator

Please ensure you are using the correct Google Okta authentication App. If you are unsure contact

Stuck on 'Your account is almost ready' page

If after authentication is set up and you are not seeing the myDATA dashboard try (one or many of) the following:

  • Press Ctrl F5
  • Clear your browser cache, delete cookies, close browser and try to log in again
  • Try a new browser session in private mode  (Edge Settings 'New InPrivate window')
  • Try a different browser, recommended browsers are: 
    • Google Chrome, latest three major releases
    • Microsoft Edge, latest three major releases
    • Mozilla Firefox, latest three major releases
    • Apple Safari, 13 or later

How do I know where my project proposal application is up to?

Each project proposal goes through various status throughout the application and approval processes. Status can be monitored from the Overview page.

How do I make changes to the project proposal?

Project proposals can only be edited while in Draft status by the Project Editor. If the Project Editor is unavailable or needs to be changed on the project proposal, please contact and we can update this for you. 

Why can't I add more text to my project proposal?

All fields which have formatting tools (rich text) will allow 32,000 characters, however using the formatting tools will introduce hidden HTML tags within the field and will count towards the overall character limit. 

Some fields do not have formatting tools, and cannot include formatting, for now these fields have a limit of 2,000 characters. Over time we will update these fields to rich text fields.

The title field has a limit of 100 characters.

Why did I get logged out of myDATA?

Sessions that are inactive for 30 minutes or more will be timed out of their active session. If you have a project proposal underway the autosave function will save your last input. 

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