# Using Real Data in Dev, Test, and QA Environments
# The Problem
Your DevOps team have dedicated their lives to ensuring your lower environments perfectly mirror Production. But what about the data?
You’ve put in the time to automate your tests and stand up QA environments but without proper data that testing cannot be trusted. In addition, your engineers need real data for local development but production data contains Personally Identifiable Information (PII). It’s irresponsible to have your customer’s private information on your developer’s laptops. We know “there are only two types of companies (opens new window)” and lower environments are a large source of data leaks.
But it is costly to manufacture new data to use in your lower environments, and impossible to capture every edge case that is present in Production – every engineer has encountered a bug that passed QA because of incomplete test data. Fake data isn’t real data.
# Building a Bespoke System to Mask PII
Many companies choose another solution: they write some scripts to replicate Production data into the lower environments, and they strip out personal information like phone, SSN, and driver’s license numbers along the way.
But it turns out anonymizing data is hard. New tables and fields are constantly being added to your application database, so the scripts need constant maintenance. And unless you are also treating quasi-identifiers, it’s highly unlikely that your script treats data to a standard that regulators or compliance officers consider anonymous.
# We Anonymize Your Data so You Don’t Have to
Privacy Dynamics is a simple privacy switch for your data. On a schedule, we can read from a replica of your Production database and write anonymized data to a privacy-safe database, which can then be made available to each of your lower environments. Our algorithms efficiently and completely de-identify your data, and can run in our cloud or yours. It’s really that simple.
Start anonymizing data today with a free trial of Privacy Dynamics by visiting our website (opens new window).