Security & Compliance

Secure Confidential Transcription Services

Privacy Policy Security and confidentiality
Takenote Exports Sky Blue Header White Complete Line BG

How do we keep your files safe and secure?


We offer transcription services you can trust, and that means providing robust security assurances. Whatever your transcription needs and whatever audio or video you need us to transcribe you can rest assured that we take the security of your data extremely seriously. 

We offer a robust catalogue of security features to assure that we are ISO Accredited and compliant with Data Protection Laws while striving to bring our diverse clientele complete peace of mind.

Left enterprise security red

Our security credentials at a glance

  • We are fully ISO accredited and have ISO 27001 and 9001 certificates. This is an extremely important part of our security infrastructure and ensures that our extremely high standards remain consistent.

  • Your content is only visible to the people specifically managing or working on your transcription.

  • Our online portal used https protocol for a secure and encrypted connection.

  • All uploaded files are stored in an encrypted AWS bucket and are never downloaded or stored outside our system at any point.

  • All our servers and databases are firewalled to permit the minimum amount of traffic necessary to run the service.

  • Our servers can only be accessed by Take Note staff and our development teams. Even then it requires authentication and can only be accessed from a restricted number of IP addresses.

  • We use Amazon Web Services (AWS) for all our hosting.

  • All personal data stored is protected by the European Data Protection Act.

  • All audio files are automatically deleted 3 months after the project close date. Formatted transcriptions are deleted after 12 months.


Why security is important (for you and for us)

We pride ourselves on being able to deliver a fast and accurate service. But that means nothing if our customers can’t trust us with their data. We value our relationships with our customers and strive to keep their data secure. 

It’s not only important for our customers, it’s important for us, too! Our catalogue of security redundancies allows us to ensure compliance with stringent UK Data Protection laws which are always changing and evolving in this fast-moving digital landscape.

Apostrophe solid line grey

The importance of the personal touch

Not only is the human touch essential in ensuring accuracy, the unfortunate truth is that automated services can actually represent serious security vulnerabilities. 

Developers of Automated Speech Recognition (ASR) apps are able to access the data in your recordings. While this is usually done for quite benign reasons like quality control, it can bring them into contact with your potentially sensitive data.

What’s more, these developers may outsource their testing to third party companies. Some of these companies may be overseas in territories where Data Protection laws are less stringent. The unfortunate truth, in this case, is that you really have no way of knowing who has your data, where it is stored, who has access to it or how many times it has been copied.

Sensitive data

Our audio transcription services are used by a range of professionals for many different purposes. These include those working in the legal and medical professions. As such we are often required to handle sensitive data. We need robust security provisions to assure our clients that their data is in safe hands.


Our video transcription and captioning services are used by a range of clients in the realm of commercial and creative media. As such, their work is highly confidential and not yet subject to general release. We need to provide the strictest confidentiality regarding video materials they send us.

So, as you can see, security is at the heart of everything we do at Take Note.

Apostrophe solid line grey

Our security redundancies bring you peace of mind

Your security is our priority! We take great care to ensure that the data you upload to us is completely safe.

Right enterprise tick icon turquoise

Compliant with all UK Data Protection Laws

We are a UK-based team of 600 strictly vetted transcribers. We use an encrypted online system and are fully compliant with all UK Data Protection legislation and 100% GDPR compliant. Your data is only as secure as the people who have access to it, and our stringent recruiting process ensures that our compliance starts with people we know we can trust.

Right enterprise tick icon peach

Our upload portal is fully secure

When you upload an audio or video file to us, you can do so with the knowledge that our portal is completely secure. We use state of the SSL encryption to make sure your data is invisible to third parties. What’s more, the data you upload to us is not locally downloaded but stored in-browser. This reduces the vulnerabilities associated with centralised data storage.

Right enterprise tick icon lime

ISO Accreditation… What does it mean?

ISO Accreditation is a standard that you should expect from any transcription service. But what does it mean in real terms?

Quite simply, our  ISO 27001 and 9001 certificates mean that our information security management infrastructure has undergone a rigorous formal assessment by an independent third-party. 

All of this combines to give you, our customer, the assurance you need and deserve!

Right enterprise tick icon red

Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs)

Even with this robust suite of security measures, we appreciate that some of our customers might need a little extra reassurance.

If you'd like to discuss the option of putting a Non-Disclosure Agreement or NDA in place, please get in touch. 

Are transcription services secure?

Transcription services are used for a wide variety of reasons, often the content being transcribed contains sensitive, personal or confidential information, particularly when it comes to Market Research projects. However, despite this, the emphasis when selecting a supplier is accuracy, time and budget. Although keeping data safe will have been a priority during a project, security can be overlooked when it comes to the transcription stage.

We want to ensure that you have all the information you need in order to find a quality transcription service that also delivers on security.

Some services are very secure and pride themselves on keeping your information safe, others have a lot of work to do. The truth is, you can’t just assume that a service is secure, you’ll need to do some checks.

Levels of security vary greatly between transcription services. But, the good news is that there are some clear things you can look for, to ensure you find a secure service that’s right for you.

Take note favicon 1

How is your transcript being produced?

Looking into how your transcript is produced is a good place to start, as the level of security is highly dependent on the tools being used to complete the work.  

Companies use different approaches which will influence the level of risk to your data. Some providers allow their freelance transcribers to download the content to their own computers to carry out the transcription using a word processor. As you can imagine, this introduces a high level of risk into the process. The security of your data becomes reliant on individuals and the protection they have put in place. It is almost impossible to ensure they are using secure networks, have installed the latest updates and are following all security protocols, particularly if they are offshore workers where data protection laws may be different. 

Instead, look for a service with a secure software platform. This enables the transcriber to play the audio or video and complete the transcript, all within a secure environment. The transcriber will not have the ability to download the files and store them locally, which would have posed a further risk to your data. A secure platform not only reduces the opportunity for any unfortunate malicious behaviour, it also helps to minimise any human error.

Take note favicon 1

Who has access to your data when using transcription services?

When using human-based transcription services it is inevitable that people will be looking at your data. When selecting a service, there are some key elements that you should consider to ensure your data is as safe as possible.

  • Find out how the provider manages your data when getting it transcribed. Some companies will only give access to your content to those who will actually be transcribing and quality checking it. Other companies may make the content accessible to much larger numbers (potentially 10,000s across the globe), even if those people don’t end up working on the transcription. This is not good practice when it comes to information security, is contrary to the principles of GDPR and obviously adds another level of risk.
  • Ensure the transcribers use a secure portal whenever they access or work on your files. If transcribers download content as a local file to their machines you’re reliant on the security measures they have or don’t have in place to keep your information safe.

Consideration of who has access to your content also applies to Automatic Speech Recognition Services (ASR). Although machines are carrying out the transcription it is likely that people will have access to the information too. This could be for product development reasons, quality control or customer success and support. This means that any security concerns apply to both human transcription services and ASR.

Whether using a human transcription service or ASR also look for other signs of security such as relevant ISO certifications, https websites and the use of encryption.

Take note favicon 1

What certifications should my transcription service have?

There are International certifications focused on information security management and quality management systems, which together are a sign that a transcription service takes security seriously.

ISO 27001 and ISO 9001 demonstrate that a company has invested in its processes and been through a rigorous assessment to achieve the certification. ISO 27001 relates to all aspects needed for a robust information security management system. ISO 9001 sets out the criteria for a quality management system with a strong customer focus. ISO provides peace of mind that the service adheres to high standards and has been approved by an impartial third-party expert.

Take note favicon 1

Should a transcription service have an HTTPS website?

A service without an HTTPS website is a big warning sign. If they haven’t gone through the process to gain the SSL certificate it is likely that they won’t be security conscious or have procedures in place to keep your data safe.

An HTTPS provides the padlock you see on legitimate websites and gives a basic level of encryption between the website and your browser. However, you should view this as a minimum requirement and look for additional levels of protection when you are sharing information. 

Take note favicon 1

What types of encryption should a transcription service use?

Alongside the basic level of an HTTPS website, there are additional layers of protection that should be in place. 

Ideally, you want the portals where you upload your content to be encrypted and also for the service to store that information in encrypted formats too. If you can’t find information about security protocols on a company’s website, drop them a line. Reputable companies will have the information to hand and will be happy to share the details. 

It’s probably a bit of a red flag if a supplier can’t, or doesn’t want to, provide you with any details!

Take note favicon 1

Are UK transcription services more secure?

UK transcription services are a good choice if you are concerned about the security of your information.

  • The UK has been subject to GDPR which has meant businesses have policies, processes and procedures in place to protect data and privacy. Even though the UK has left the EU, there is now a UK version of the GDPR in domestic law. 
  • It is crucial that any rights conferred on data subjects by data protection legislation are reliably enforced in a court of law. Otherwise, unfortunately, the legislation is worthless. The UK has a robust judicial system which pursues privacy and security violations should they occur. 

Although UK transcription services are likely to provide a good standard of data privacy and security, you should check that the actual workforce is also based in the UK. The UK has strong employment laws which offer another level of peace of mind.

Take note favicon 1

Are transcription services that use offshore workers safe?

A large offshore transcriber base can be beneficial to turnaround times and cost, however you should also consider the security of your information alongside the quality of the work and whether any associated working practices align with your brand values. 

  • If NDAs are signed it may be challenging for them to be enforced, particularly in countries with limited privacy laws and low tendencies to pursue violations.
  • The use of offshore transcribers can mean your information is open to a large number of people which increases the risk when it comes to the security of your data.

It’s also important not to just focus on the traditional offshore countries that might immediately spring to mind. For example, transferring personal data to the US has become much more complicated and the burden is usually on you, as the data controller, to assess and be confident that the correct levels of protection are in place and that those rights are enforceable.

Take note favicon 1

Are cheaper transcription services less secure?

Although cost is not a direct sign of security, a cheaper price could be an indication that a service has less rigorous processes and systems in place. 

If a service seems particularly cheap it is worth understanding how they are able to offer that price.

  • Are you comparing like with like? Many advertised prices are based on perfect audio quality, with ‘additions’ quickly adding up for poor audio, multiple speakers, accents or specialist topics.
  • Are they using up-to-date security protocols? Things to look for include an HTTPS site and the use of encrypted portals and storage.
  • Do they have any security certifications in place? Certifications, such as ISO are usually time and resource-intensive so may not be prioritised by companies competing on price.
Take note favicon 1

Is ASR more secure than human transcription services?

You may feel that by removing the ‘human’ element from the transcription process you’ll automatically get a more secure service. However, regardless of the type of service, people inevitably will have some level of access to your content and therefore the checklist for a secure service applies to both human transcription services and ASR.

For ASR, people are likely to have access to your information for a number of legitimate reasons. This can include carrying out quality control on the platform and the subsequent returned transcripts. Customer success teams are likely to have access and view the content to provide support and resolve any potential issues. 

Content may also be used in product development to help develop and test new features and for tasks such as algorithm training. Using ‘real-life’ content can be helpful in these circumstances to ensure new features and functionality work well for the provider’s use cases. Using existing content tends to be quicker, easier and cheaper than generating fresh content. This does mean more people might have access and listen to your content than you expect. Check the fine print in the T&Cs to understand exactly how your content will be used. 

Make sure you’re comfortable with who has access to your content, including any potential third parties, and ensure you have clarity on how it will be used.

Disclaimer - This blog aims to provide you with some basic information regarding security when using transcription services. It is not legal, security or technical advice and should not be relied on as such. Please seek professional advice where required.

For more articles on security and compliance please see blog.

Take note favicon 1
Blue header up w bg

What our clients think

Expedia logo

I would like to publicly declare my love for Takenote. They have great people and a wonderful staff who work with you to develop great transcripts. Very fast, thorough and professional. A must-have tool for serious video marketers and SEO practitioners.

The academy of midical languages logo

Very professional and excellent service. Will continue to use for our note-taking!

Kcl logo

We were extremely happy and impressed with the quality of the transcripts. Take Note provide reliable, professional and efficient services. They also give excellent support to their customers throughout every step of the process. Their online system is intuitive and easy to use, which allows to upload files within minutes. We will continue using their services without a doubt! Thank you.

Ipsos logo

Take Note offered a highly professional service that was fast, efficient, and of a high standard. They were exceptionally quick in their communication, which was key in achieving the results we needed. Many thanks, look forward to working with your team again.

Bmg logo

I recently used Take Note for transcribing a series of focus groups and would highly recommend them. The transcriptions were to a good quality and were turned around very quickly. The Take Note portal was very easy to navigate and it was clear when my transcriptions were ready. I particularly like the Quote Generator function, which makes it really easy to play around with functions and costs. I also found everyone at Take Note to be really helpful and quick to respond. I had an issue with video files being too large to upload to the portal. After contacting Take Note, someone helped me with compressing the file so it could be uploaded.

Yougov logo

I work for a research company and Take Note supply us with transcribtions for: audio calls, online focus groups, face-to-face focus groups etc. They work very efficiently and I've always had great service from all the members of their team. I would **highly recommend** this company to anyone looking for really fast transcribing turn-arounds. Thanks for all your help!

The telegraph logo

Speedy, accurate transcriptions with great customer service. Totally recommend.

Ingenious growth logo

What a great service from end to end! The online portal to upload the files was simple and clear and the delivery time was really quick too. The quality of the output was top-notch - even with some "testing" content to be captured. Take Note are now my #1 supplier of choice for typing services. Thank you!

Truth logo

I just wanted to extend a big thank you for the quality of work produced – please see below for some great feedback from one of my most senior colleagues here. Really high praise and makes me look good to have such great suppliers so THANK YOU! Please can you contact the transcriber and say how great these transcripts are. Not sure if they ever get thanks, probably only complaints, but these are really fabulous and hugely helpful in their richness. The transcriber has really captured the rhythm of language and so the spirit of the group, not just what they said. Excellent work. Like to give credit where it’s due.


We use Take Notes services regularly and are always completely satisfied with the level of service we receive. The note takers are friendly and professional and the notes are always of a high quality standard and delivered in a timely fashion. A joy to work with!

Lse logo

I have been genuinely impressed by the level of service offered by Take Note. From the moment I first contacted them for a quote, they have been friendly, helpful, and proactive. All of my queries have been answered quickly and fully, and they have been very accommodating of the needs relating to our project. I heartily recommend Take Note, and will certainly be using them for future transcription work that I and my colleagues need.

Fizz bang pop logo

Professional, friendly and most importantly, high quality. The project is managed from start to finish, and there is always help on hand if you have any questions. I am looking forward to working with the team again.

Brain value logo

Portail intuitive, easy to access, easy to use, fast & efficient upload, fast & efficient quote system, a great choice of services, high quality complete notes, good quality service received. Great team to work with, patient, pro-ac

Pixel bin

Very professional, very quick turn around and speedy communication. Would highly recommend.

Source fieldwork logo logo

Take Note have always been my first choice when booking live note-taking or transcriptions for my clients. Take Note are really responsive to requests and have never let me down. All of my clients are really happy with the transcriptions/note-taking we have had. Also costs are very reasonable. Excellent and would thoroughly recommend. Lucy - Source Fieldwork

The nursery

Take Note are absolutely brilliant. Always seem to deliver quicker than they say they would. Good customer service too. I called them with a query and they were both friendly and helpful

Acacia avenue logo

Take Note have been my go to agency for transcription ever since I began working at Acacia Avenue. I've been offered free trials from various other transcription agencies, and I'm yet to experience a portal that's as user friendly and streamlined. Our contacts do a brilliant jobs of managing our requests too. Highly recommended.

College of york logo

I am undertaking a doctorate and I used Take Note for transcription of my interviews (8 in total - due to upload another 2 this week). The Take Note dashboard is very comprehensive compared to others that I have used, but most of all it is very user friendly and there is help on hand should you need it. The price is VERY reasonable - compared to other transcription services that I have used in the past. The quality of the manuscripts is excellent, and they are available for downloading in different formats. I have and will be using them again! I used Take Note again, for further interview transcriptions - again, they were efficient and provided an excellent service! And VERY reasonably priced too! I have recommended the service to a colleague who is also undertaking doctoral study - and she has also used the service! (and is very happy with Take Note!)

Myrtlefield logo

We have used Take Note over the past 3+ years, and they have produced over 1,000 hours worth of transcripts for us (over 10,000 A4 pages). Some of the recordings were difficult, and the content specialised. Over that time, the staff has proven to be professional, easy to work with and quick to adjust according to our specifications. Couldn't say enough good about them or rate them more highly. You won't be disappointed if you choose them for your transcription work.

Flamingo logo

The company I work for has been using Take Note for a number of years and in the 4 and a half years I've worked here, I have dealt with them on a regular basis. I can honestly say they have never let us down! Any time of day (or evening) I will receive a prompt response- with the answer always being 'of course we can help and meet your deadline.' The staff are so friendly in emails and on the phone and yet always professional- you know you're in capable hands.

Viacom logo

Take Note are always incredibly professional, swift and friendly. My go to service for quick turnaround transcriptions for MTV and Comedy Central.

Cabinet office logo

Take Note are really helpful and responsive and always turn around transcripts really quickly (good communicators too)

Yorkshire sculpture

I have TakeNotes services on numerous occasions now and they have always done a wonderful job every time. It was on time, completed at a really high use-able, clear standard and the cutting down of the unnecessary parts of the transcript were really successful and saved a lot of my time. You can see that the person transcribing has a high level of understanding of the purpose of the transcription. Thanks so much

The research house logo

Take Note are our go-to company for all of our transcript needs for over 5 years now. Their transcripts are high quality and accurate. The portal to upload audio is very easy to use and so handy to login into to see the stage our transcripts are. We also use Take Note for Notetaking and their note takers arrive promptly, smartly dressed and ready to work. We have great feedback from our clients, and of course the TN team are lovely to work with too. Highly recommend.

Little wing

I couldn't be happier with TakeNote - friendly efficient service, really reasonably priced, with excellent note takers who deliver accurate transcripts at seriously impressive speed (first thing the morning after a late evening of note taking).

Cfe research logo

Takenote offer a range of transcription services to suit differing needs. They are extremely responsive to queries and have an efficient online portal to upload recordings and download transcripts. I would highly recommend their services 🙂

Ppl insights logo

I contacted Takenote via the chat on the website. Lucy was really helpful and gave me quotes really quickly for a few different options. Once my client approved the costs the set up on the online portal was done in minutes where I then uploaded everything ready to be transcribed. Although I only paid for turnaround in 7 days I started receving completed transcriptions back the next day. The quality of them was great and the support via email and the chat was great, everyone was really friendly and helpful. I was also surprised at just how good the price was for 40 transcribed videos! I wouldn't go anywhere else after this.

Plum films logo

Take Note have been a great find! Their team was so helpful, responding very quickly - and the process of uploading files to their portal is simple, and clear. The transcriptions were very accurate … and these were supplied ahead of the 48 hours turnaround time too! So all round, I'd highly recommend them

Kantar logo

Service is fantastic, even though i quite often book VERY last minute they do everything they can to help me out. Transcripts are always good quality and note takers at f/w always do a great job. Would highly recommend

Polar insight logo

Take Note provide very high quality transcription. I've used them many times for both the 24 hour and 48 hour turnaround services. The transcripts have been returned earlier than expected and are always accurate. The portal is easy to use in terms of uploading audio files, and inviting colleagues/clients to read and download the transcripts. The staff are always quick to respond and very helpful whenever I've had queries. I'd recommend them to any market or social research agency who needs good quality transcripts, quickly.

Takenote exports grey dashed line