Safeguarding Employee Data: The Case for Scrambling in Non-Production Environments for GDPR Compliance





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How secure is your Employee Data really?

In today’s digital age, where data is considered the new oil, protecting sensitive information has become paramount for organizations across industries. With the introduction of regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the onus is on companies to ensure that they are handling personal data, including highly sensitive employee information, with the utmost care and compliance. One area that often gets overlooked is the management of employee data in non-production environments, which can pose significant risks if not handled properly.

Risking non-compliancy

Many organizations store copies of production data in non-production environments for various purposes such as testing, development, and analytics. While this practice is common and necessary for business operations, it can also expose sensitive employee data to potential breaches and non-compliance with data protection regulations like GDPR. One effective strategy to mitigate these risks is by scrambling or anonymizing highly sensitive employee data in non-production environments.

Data Scrambling: the most effective measure

Scrambling involves replacing sensitive information with realistic, but fictional, data in non-production environments. This technique allows organizations to maintain the usability and integrity of the data for testing and other purposes while reducing the risk of exposing sensitive information to unauthorized users. By scrambling data such as social security numbers, bank account details, and personal addresses, companies can significantly lower the chances of a data breach or non-compliance with GDPR regulations.

Implementing strict Security Administration: the downside

Unfortunately, many organizations still unnecessarily accept the risk of exposing sensitive employee data in non-production environments. Some companies attempt to address this issue by implementing complex security measures and access controls across their HR systems and different instances. While these efforts are commendable, they can often be costly, time-consuming, and prone to human error, leaving room for vulnerabilities and compliance gaps.

Demonstrating commitment towards data protection

By adopting a proactive approach and integrating data scrambling techniques into their data management practices, organizations can achieve GDPR compliance more effectively and efficiently. Scrambling data in non-production environments not only reduces the risk of data breaches and regulatory fines but also demonstrates a commitment to protecting employee privacy and upholding ethical data handling practices.


In conclusion, safeguarding highly sensitive employee data in non-production environments is crucial for GDPR compliance and overall data protection. Organizations should prioritize the implementation of data scrambling techniques as a proactive and effective measure to mitigate risks and ensure regulatory adherence. By doing so, companies can foster a culture of data security, privacy, and trust, ultimately benefiting both their employees and their bottom line.

Want to learn more how Epicenter can help you achieve peace of mind on the matter?

Read more on our data scrambling solution for Oracle Cloud HCM customers!


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