Kobo availabiity and Kobo server in China

We plan to use Kobo in China. I was wondering if Kobo was operational in the country and where data collected from Kobo was stored, regarding the most recent laws in terms of data collection and data transfer requirements?

Welcome to the community, @it_emm_jos! This support article Is My Data Safe on Your Server? should answer your query.

Hi thanks for your answer! To be more precise my question is: can the data collected in China can be sent to the AWS database in the US?

It doesn’t matter where your data is collected. The instance you select will determine where the data is stored, as described in the article linked above.

The instance hosted by Kobo (kf.kobotoolbox.org) is physically located in the United States of America. The humanitarian instance financed by OCHA, is hosted at a data center in Ireland.

If you are a humanitarian user, then you are welcome to use the OCHA-financed instance at kobo.humanitarianresponse.info.

Compliance with any laws applicable to your jurisdiction is your responsibility.


Thanks for your answer. In the newest China’s Data Security Law, article 36 of the DSL restricts a company’s ability to transfer any data stored in China to a foreign judicial or law enforcement authority without government approval.

Do you confirm that currently, all data that is collected in China is transfered to the US (meaning that Chinese governement approval has to be asked before any activity) or is there an intermediary server in China?

The law is still under definition by the governement, thank you for your answer :slight_smile:


@it_emm_jos, we have 2 publicly available servers. The OCHA server (humanitarian worker) is located in Ireland while the KoboToolbox by Kobo (for everyone else) is located in the US. Apart from these, we have no other servers. Thus, if you are using the OCHA server to collect and store data, it will be stored in Ireland and if you are using the KoboToolbox by Kobo to collect and store data, it will be stored in the US.

If you still wish to use KoboToolbox from your country, maybe you could install a self-hosted server as outlined in the support article Installing KoboToolbox on a Local Computer or Installing KoboToolbox on Your Own Servers.