Data Engineering

Sharing Data Made Easy with Snowflake Data Cloud

In today’s data-driven world, the ability to share data securely and efficiently is a cornerstone of modern business operations. Enter Snowflake Data Cloud, a revolutionary platform designed to streamline the complex process of data sharing. Snowflake’s innovative approach to data sharing is transforming how organizations collaborate, make decisions, and derive insights from their data assets. In this blog, we will explore the fundamental principles behind data sharing using Snowflake, delve into its numerous advantages, consider the associated costs, and guide you through the process of data sharing within the Snowflake ecosystem.

Some of the core principles of data sharing within Snowflake are zero-copy data sharing, security, and data sharing as a service. For the first feature, it is important to note that data sharing does not mean duplicating your data to its consumer. All data remains centralized in a single location, thereby reducing redundancy and ensuring data consistency. Snowflake employs advanced encryption, authentication mechanisms, and extensive access controls to safeguard shared data. This ensures that only authorized users can access the data, maintaining data integrity and privacy. Snowflake treats data sharing as a first-class service. You can share data with ease, whether within your organization or with external partners, using a SQL-like syntax. This simplifies data sharing, making it accessible to a wider audience.

It is very easy to share specific objects in your account with other Snowflake accounts, or even with consumers who do not own a Snowflake account. In the latter case, you can simply create a reader account. Using this account, you will also be able to log in to Snowsight and query the shared data. The reader account will be connected to your account, which is called the provider account. All costs associated to querying the data in the reader account will be transferred to the provider account. So be aware when setting up numerous reader accounts. When sharing your data with another Snowflake consumer, usage costs are the responsibility of the consumer. Not all objects of a database can be shared though. You can share tables, external tables, secure views, secure materialized views, and secure UDFs.

Why would anyone be interested in data sharing?

Remember that the costs for using Snowflake are decoupled in compute and storage. When consuming shared data, the services layer and metadata store are being used. No actual data is stored in the consumer’s account. Therefore, no charges are being made for storage, only the compute resources contribute to the consumer’s bill regarding the shared data. In addition, Snowflake’s ability to handle large volumes of data and compute resources on-demand ensures that data sharing remains efficient, regardless of the scale. This scalability is particularly beneficial for organizations experiencing rapid growth or fluctuating data needs.

Moreover, Snowflake’s architecture supports real-time data sharing, ensuring that all users have access to the latest information. This is particularly valuable for data-driven organizations relying on up-to-the-minute insights for decision-making. Using data sharing, collaboration among teams, departments, or external stakeholders can take place. This will optimize your organization’s collaboration. Snowflake offers robust governance and compliance features, helping organizations meet regulatory requirements when sharing sensitive data. Features like auditing, tracking, and access control maintain data integrity and security of a company.

Snowflake data sharing is not only interesting when sharing within a specific organization, but sharing your data can also be done over the complete Snowflake ecosystem. Snowflake Marketplace connects you to over 480 providers, offering more than 2,100 live, ready-to-use data, services, and Snowflake Native Apps. For example, a COVID-19 Epidemiological dataset is available through Marketplace. No need to collect this information yourself, just request the dataset and you are ready to go. Note that some datasets are free to use, while others have a cost attached. Hence, this means you can also make some money using Snowflake, if you share your data on Snowflake Marketplace for a specific fee.

In the current world full of data, Snowflake is revolutionary when it comes to data sharing. Its data sharing principles empower organizations to collaborate effectively, optimize costs, and monetize their data assets while maintaining the highest levels of security and compliance. And as we revel in the transformative capabilities of data sharing, do not forget the parallel importance of knowledge sharing – a practice that leads to growth, enlightenment, and progress. So, whether you are exploring the data-sharing possibilities within Snowflake Marketplace or collaborating with partners and colleagues, remember that you hold the keys to unlocking the potential of your data.

Interested in how we share knowledge and data at togaether? Feel free to contact us!