How a Media Company Restored Secure Data Access by Migrating to Google Cloud in an Express Mode

Margo Ovsiienko

About the Client

A US-based company with an office in Europe helps advertisers and marketers increase ad efficiency through advanced personalization, ROI measurement, and better targeting. With the Client’s solution brands are now able to serve customers with more relevant ads and,  at the same time, remain privacy-compliant. 

Challenge

Following the partition from the parent company and facing expiration of support contract in their Data Center, the Client was forced to move all data to Google Cloud Platform, the ultimate destination for any Client’s technical resources. 

Looking for a software agency to finish the project on a short deadline, the Client approached Neoteric. After accepting the project details, we deployed a team of developers who later performed migration within the next 3 months. 

During the visit of Client’s data scientists in Neoteric’s headquarters in Gdańsk we saw a fit in work culture between our teams. This resulted in kicking off project and dispatching the team of Neoteric’s developers to one of the Client’s offices in Europe. This decision was necessary and we gladly did it as we wanted to ensure frictionless communication. 

Moreover, we perceived this aspect as crucial to finish a project on time. The team of our engineers visited the Client for one week to gather domain knowledge and transfer requirements into a well-organized backlog. Spending more time with the Client on the ground was an indispensable factor to streamline communication and finishing the project on a short timescale.

Solution

A team of 4 Neoteric developers worked on the project for the Client’s Data Science team. We established close-knit cooperation between our teams – by introducing daily standups and conducting all project meetings together. As a result, thanks to more effective communication, our team got a better understanding of the Client’s daily work.

Our team worked with both PII or Personally-Identifiable Information that stands for any data used to identify a person, e.g. email address, first name, last name, and nPII, the information that cannot be used on its own to identify or trace a person – age, sex, type of house, postal code. These two types of information had to be handled in separate environments – the isolation of data was a project requirement. 

To adequately secure sensitive data, we used a protected subnet of a GCP project with limited Internet access. Terraform was used to easily create the dev, stage and prod environments and to implementing a good practise of code infrastructure.

As the Client wanted to make a copy of prod, and then iterate on it to add new changes,  we used Terraform to create the Prod GCP project.

Our team also had to ensure easier security remediation, disaster recovery, and environment management with minimal manual configuration. Therefore, we introduced replaceable VMs and data storage on an isolated file.

Technology

Our teams used the following technology to implement the project: Google Cloud Function, VPC Service Controls, Cloud NAT, Identity-Aware Proxy, Squid Server, Oracle DB, OS Login.

Result

We manage to assemble a team of developers within a week and kick off the project in the Client’s office in Paris. Thanks to a smooth communication flow the migration to Google Cloud Platform from Axciom DataCenter was successfully performed within an expected deadline and a Client acquired a secure access to data storage. 

As a result of meeting the Client’s expectations on the delivery, we started the next project with Liveramp – SPIR platform migration. 

We assigned the same team to this project because they had knowledge and a good understanding of the project goals. The team, together with the Product Owner (form the Client’s side), prepared suggestions about how we could approach the SPIR project. The main goal was to assess the feasibility of SPIR migration out of the Datacenter. The scope of the project contained FastStat migration and OracleDB migration. 

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