· 3 min read
Software development practices have matured dramatically over the last several years. But in spite of all of the other advances, using realistic data for development and testing while complying with privacy laws remains out of reach for most organizations.
It can be tempting to give developers a dump of production data, but there are enormous risks involved in doing this. Nearly all data contains PII, and in addition to magnifying the risk of a breach, using PII for development violates a suite of data privacy laws (like GDPR and CCPA) and standards (like SOC2) that require data minimization.
On the other hand, providing your development teams with continuous, realistic, and trustworthy data allows them to test against difficult edge cases, bugs, and ever-changing application demands. Such an environment provides an extremely valuable test bench, so a lot of teams try to build their own, either by manufacturing fake data or writing scripts to scrub PII from production data. But anonymization is hard, and many home-grown systems fail to meet the accepted standards for de-identification. And of course, after the initial build, maintaining such a system and keeping the schema up-to-date is a non-trivial chore that can negatively impact schedules and team morale.
Today, we’re excited to announce Privacy Dynamics for Development and Testing Environments. All you need to do is point Privacy Dynamics at your production database and it will generate an anonymized copy that will meet your organization’s data privacy and security requirements. Privacy Dynamics is free, self-service, and available to start using today at privacydynamics.io.
The steps below walk through setting up Privacy Dynamics for development and test environments. The only requirement is that the source data is accessible over the Internet (if that isn’t the case, get in touch with us to learn more about running Privacy Dynamics in your cloud environment).
First, you’ll need to establish connections to both the source and destination databases. Privacy Dynamics will read from the source database, process the data, and write anonymized data to the destination database you choose. You may want to use a read-replica of your Production DB as the source. Privacy Dynamics does not keep a copy of your data. In this example, we’ll use Postgres as both our source and destination databases.
The anonymization process won’t take long. Other synthetic data and de-identification solutions can take hours or days to process your data, but we can treat millions of records in minutes. Once it finishes, you can use
psql to copy the anonymized database to your local machine.
pg_dump -C -h remotehost -U remoteuser dbname | psql -h localhost -U localuser dbname
Sign up for a free account and start anonymizing data for your development and testing environments today. We are always available for questions and technical support by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can book a demo using this link.