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Seeking SRE by David N. Blank-Edelman

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Chapter 15. The Intersection of Reliability and Privacy

Note

Privacy engineering is a young field in which industry players remain cautious with their public discussion. We hope that the relatively abstract concepts and approaches discussed in this chapter will spark ideas of more concrete privacy opportunities within your own organization and build an environment in which conversations around privacy innovation can thrive.

With the recent publication of Google’s SRE book as well as a fair number of other publications and conferences about SRE, DevOps, and related movements, there’s a fairly active conversation about reliability engineering across the industry. As an inherently more sensitive topic, privacy engineering is less openly discussed, and, as a result, less well understood. Although many companies and organizations are beginning to think about many of the correct and important aspects of privacy and to consider privacy as an engineering discipline, this field is much less robust than SRE. Yet at the same time, privacy is a critically important concern for virtually every company or organization that handles private data, given that mishandling private data typically can’t be undone.

After scanning the contents of this volume, you might be asking yourself, “Why does a book about SRE dedicate an entire chapter to privacy?” Sure, any organization that actually cares about its users should invest energy in both reliability and privacy. ...

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