Test Data Management! The Anatomy & five tools to use

Test data is subject to the restrictive requirements for technical as well as organizational data protection that also affect the testing of software and systems. Among other things, companies must ensure so-called access control. This means that, in order to ensure data protection, personal data must not be read, copied, modified or deleted without authorization after processing, usage and storage.

definition of test data management

Software testing can also provide an objective, independent view of the software to allow the business to appreciate and understand the risks of software implementation. Test techniques include, but are not limited to, the process of executing a program or application with the intent of finding software bugs . Test data management is used by organizations that do a lot of business critical processing https://globalcloudteam.com/ of sensitive data. It is especially important in industries such as health care where a breach of sensitive customer data could be extremely damaging. However, most organizations have some data that is sensitive and needs to be masked for testing purposes. Due to privacy rules and regulations like GDPR, PCI and HIPAA it is not allowed to use privacy sensitive personal data for testing.

Why Test Data Management matters?

AI-powered synthetic data generators learn the patterns and qualities of a sample database. Once the training of the AI algorithm has taken place, it can produce as much or as little test data as defined. AI-generated synthetic data needs additional privacy measures to prevent the algorithm from overfitting. Some commercially available synthetic data generators come with additional privacy and accuracy controls. The amount of data to be tested is determined or limited by considerations such as time, cost and quality. Time to produce, cost to produce and quality of the test data, and efficiency.

definition of test data management

This means that personal data must be protected against accidental destruction or loss. If new technologies are used in a company that pose risks to data subjects, the company must conduct a so-called data protection impact assessment in accordance to Article 35 of the GDPR. If particularly sensitive data is to be processed in the IT system, a technical risk analysis must be carried out when planning the tests of this system. The test data management is thus closely scrutinized and it is analyzed whether data protection is still guaranteed. Our test data management tool Libelle DataMasking is ideally suited for this purpose. The increased adoption of TDM solutions and services by several industry verticals has boosted the growth of the Test Data Management Market.

Collecting and identifying the data itself doesn’t provide any value—the organization needs to process it. If it takes a lot of time and effort to convert the data into what they need for analysis, that analysis won’t happen. Organizations are capturing, storing, and using more data all the time. As more and more data is collected from sources as disparate as video cameras, social media, audio recordings, and Internet of Things devices, big data management systems have emerged.

Why Is Test Data Critical in Modern Digital Systems?

Data Management, for testing or other purposes, is quite a challenge for modern software organizations. Test Data Management, specifically, is a complex, comprehensive, and essential process in a modern software testing approach. As we’ve seen, there’s no way to ensure at least the minimum level of quality in an application without adopting a proper testing strategy. You’ve also seen that, without high-quality, readily available test data, even excellent testing processes fall short.

In today’s digital economy, data is a kind of capital, an economic factor of production in digital goods and services. Just as an automaker can’t manufacture a new model if it lacks the necessary financial capital, it can’t make its cars autonomous if it lacks the data to feed the onboard algorithms. This new role for data has implications for competitive strategy as well as for the future of computing. That’s why a sane automated testing strategy should adopt Test Data Management tools. When it comes to testing, everything you’ve seen above also applies.

Filling the position of test data manager has become very difficult. The position requires skills in many different domains, like programming, engineering, data masking, and project management. There is tremendous competition among companies to hire test data managers with the right combination of skills. You must make sure that your test data manager has the skills necessary to handle all the responsibilities that come with this position.


Data vulnerability is a huge problem; often, organizations get into legal troubles and would potentially lose a lot of money. The best way and the only way to fix this is to mask the data meticulously. Many don’t know or don’t realize that a tester spends around percent of his/her time gathering and maintaining data. A discovery layer on top of your organization’s data tier allows analysts and data scientists to search and browse for datasets to make your data useable. Big data integration brings in different types of data—from batch to streaming—and transforms it so that it can be consumed. If the data isn’t ready for you when you need it, its quality is irrelevant.

  • The General Data Protection Regulation enacted by the European Union and implemented in May 2018 includes seven key principles for the management and processing of personal data.
  • IT & telecom segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period.
  • A test data manager should have a wide variety of skills, including data engineering, software engineering, and testing skills.
  • The cost of fixing bugs will increase with the total time it takes to detect them.
  • Due to privacy regulations, production data requires masking before use in testing.

The most important reason for hiring a test data manager is to ensure that high-quality data is fed to automated testing algorithms. Your test data manager should have experience in automation using Excel Macros, QTP, and similar tools. Furthermore, having a good understanding of database technologies like Big data/Hadoop, Teradata, SQL Server, or DB2 will help the candidate manage data storage tasks. Test data management is not just about data protection, but also about automated provisioning of test data, as offered by our dream team Libelle SystemCopy and Libelle DataMasking.

However, gathering production data can be time-consuming, especially late in the development process when dealing with large amounts of code. The software development cycle is filled with challenges, as organizations are faced with not only decreased time-to-market but also increased application complexity. To ensure applications remain stable and functional, from initial development through product launch and beyond, organizations need to employ a variety of testing types. Today’s organizations need a data management solution that provides an efficient way to manage data across a diverse but unified data tier.

What Is Data Virtualization

Of course, these objectives will not apply to the same degree to every business. A company managing patient records, for instance, may have no interest in incorporating its data into a phone application. Nonetheless, these objectives can help guide and inform the management processes of many businesses. Processing market data, for instance, can help an investment bank predict the future of a stock.

Project responsibility also includes technical responsibility for the test project. Here, the definition of the technical and regulatory requirements takes place, and in addition, their compliance is ensured with the provision of the corresponding resources. Synthetic data is created either manually or with automated testing tools. The GDPR and other laws that follow in its footsteps, such as the California Consumer Privacy Act , are changing the face of data management. These requirements provide standardized data protection laws that give individuals control over their personal data and how it is used.

Test data management consists of creating nonproduction data sets that fulfill the quality requirements of software quality-testing while maintaining the privacy of data. Test data management helps organizations create better quality software that will perform reliably on deployment. It prevents bug fixes and rollbacks and overall creates a more cost-efficient software deployment process. Production data is often not practical for use in a test system due to security and regulatory concerns. Data that has personally identifiable information must be altered in order to protect people from having sensitive data exposed to the development and testing teams.

Data management systems are built on data management platforms and can include databases, data lakes and data warehouses, big data management systems, data analytics, and more. We start by taking a look at the current state of affairs in the software development world. You’ll understand why applying automation to the software development process is vital for modern organizations and definition of test data management what roles the automated testing plays in this scenario. There is a lot of attention to testing methods like security testing, performance testing, or regression testing. But how to handle the data which you need for testing software is addressed less often. That is actually quite strange since software development and testing would stand or fall on carefully prepared data cases.

How Test Data Management works?

The cost of fixing bugs will increase with the total time it takes to detect them. If the quality of the data that you feed into your testing is poor, then your testing can fail. No amount of strategizing will save your testing if you use low-quality data.

If the data necessary for your test varies considerably, manual testing might produce better results. It must also have business relevance to help testing remain cost-effective and efficient. Invalid data derives from the “unhappy path.” It is the data from unexpected scenarios and faults. Invalid data is also used as a part of chaos testing, which tests the limits of an application under a deluge of bad data.

Best practices for data management

The process of managing the data necessary to fulfill the requirements of automated tests is known as test data management. A test data manager can use a test data management solution to create test data per the needs of the tests. To do this, the requirement for each individual step must be documented. This way, a matrix can be developed for the selection of the required tool for a GDPR -compliant test data management. Based on Component, The market is bifurcated into Solution and Services. The solution segment is further sub-segmented into web experience management, mobile and social content management, digital marketing management, and others.

While specifics will vary, enterprise-level software developers will generally follow these steps when implementing a TDM strategy. Compliance issues, such as medical and financial data, that require obfuscation. Testing teams are overworked and unable to keep up with testing needs. Testing teams are decentralized or must rely on data from a central source.

Effective Planning is the key

Through structured query language , this data can be accessed and manipulated for a wide number of applications. The secure and efficient management of data is critical because of its central role in the modern world. Providing directions through a phone app is a great way to demonstrate this.

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