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Translucent Databases


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Book: Translucent Databases Second Edition

Author: Peter Wayner

I bought this book before my first Magento project, when I thought we’d be responsible for storing passwords and credit card numbers. This was the project where I learned about password hashing with a per-username-salt, and that no one in their right mind stores credit cards in their local databases. (Payment Processors are not, strictly speaking, in their right minds).

Over the next ten years I’d encounter multiple potential freelance clients who did have encrypted credit cards stored in a database and it was always a nice red flag to help me gently nudge them elsewhere.

The book was an interesting read in techniques for protecting databases and building them in such a way that a single breach is not catastrophic. I have no idea whether the techniques described are theoretical or actually used in the real world.

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Originally Posted: 2nd September 2021

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