Snowflake Data Share Quick Start Guide

Snowflake Data Share Quick Start Guide

Table Of Contents

Roughly 50% of all corporate data gets stored in virtual clouds. However, not all users have access to those clouds, making it tough for businesses to stay organized.

That’s where data sharing comes in. Data sharing allows businesses to move specific pieces of information around their organization, giving access to the appropriate users. Typically, this is done through a data share platform such as one of our partners, Snowflake.

If you’re considering using Snowflake, this guide will walk you through how it works as well as the implementation process for your business.

What Is Snowflake Data Sharing?

Snowflake data sharing is a cloud computing-based software that allows individuals with Snowflake accounts to share information within the database.

The information, known as objects, that you can share within Snowflake include:

  • External tables
  • Secure views
  • Secure UDFs
  • Tables
  • Secure materialized views

Data providers are responsible for creating the databases while data consumers import them.

One key benefit of Snowflake data share is secure data sharing and confidentiality. Snowflake allows you to share these pieces of information and ensures that data is not transferred or copied between two accounts in the process.

Snowflake can provide a few other key benefits to businesses and organizations include:

  1. Keeping copies of data and ensuring they are in sync
  2. Storage-saving when dealing with large amounts of data and the associated storage costs
  3. Save on computing costs associated with managing large amounts of data from various sources
  4. Taking control of maintenance needed

Snowflake data sharing can also provide an accurate estimate of the time frame for how long your product can deliver its proposed business goals. Businesses can then sell that time frame information to potential customers.

How Does Revelate Fit with the Snowflake Platform?

Although Snowflake data share is a separate entity, it’s closely tied to Revelate. You see, although Snowflake makes data sharing possible, it has the barrier of only allowing users with Snowflake accounts to access and purchase information.

Revelate eliminates this barrier and enables discovery and visibility even if you don’t have a Snowflake account, allowing more potential data consumers access. This allows data consumers to see what kind of data is available without needing to create an account in advance, and sign up for the platform if interested.

Revelate Data Fulfillment platform also offers customizations for better data management and overall user experience.

Feature Advantage
Granular Data Products
  • Allow Snowflake customers granular catalog customization, giving them full control over branding, marketing, and data packaging
Self Service Data Marketplace
  • Gives users a self-serve approach, reducing the data consumer and data provider interaction
Full Entitlement Control
  • Data consumers have complete control over the catalogs they wish to browse. At the same time, data providers also have control over what data consumers see and request.

It’s important to note that when creating a data share in Snowflake, you can add worksheets and short descriptions. These short descriptions can grant SQL queries or pre-built codes. You can query the data from the granted SQL queries and provide examples of their usage.

However, that’s about as far as the program goes. Any additional functionality solely through Snowflake data share is quite limited.

To expand on this capability, the Revelate platform facilitates the creation of data products that users can tag with customized metadata. Data consumers can also customize data product packaging, including the following:

  • Its appearance in the data store
  • The type of metadata shown when data products are displayed
  • The metadata shown when the data product is explored

Other advanced features of using Snowflake through Revelate is that it allows customizable product documentation for data consumers to discover more information about a particular product.

The continuous demand increase for data monetization and sharing will change data consumers’ demands on consuming data. Different sets of views, data cuts, and databases will be requested. Revelate meets these customization demands and allows data providers to have full control over data visibility without limits.

Unlock Your Data's Potential with Revelate

Revelate provides a suite of capabilities for data sharing and data commercialization for our customers to fully realize the value of their data. Harness the power of your data today!

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Snowflake Dynamic Data Masking

Dynamic data masking involves using masking policies to create realistic yet inauthentic copies of sensitive data to protect key information. It’s Snowflake’s column-level security feature, ensuring confidentiality on the platform.

Masking policies in Snowflake are schema-level objects. This means that they can only be applied when Snowflake has a running database and schema. For the configuration of Snowflake dynamic data masking, there are five main steps you’ll need to take:

  1. Set a custom privacy or security officer role on the platform.
  2. Grant privileges on making policy management to the custom role.
  3. Creating and defining masking policies.
  4. The security officer applies the policies to columns secured with sensitive data.
  5. Execute queries in Snowflake.

This system of masking data gives both consumers and data providers a number of key benefits:

  • Ease of Use: one policy can be applied in several columns across databases
  • Data governance and authorization: contextual role accessed by custom entitlements
  • Data administration: the security officer is responsible for choosing which columns need protection
  • Data sharing: easy masking before sharing
  • Change management: changing masking policy is easy without reapplication to all columns

The result is a simplified way of protecting data, even when sharing sensitive information among various users.

How to Implement Data Sharing Snowflake

How to Implement Data Sharing Snowflake

Data sharing is one of Snowflake’s most advanced and powerful innovations, yet it’s easy to set up and navigate.

Data sharing implementation on Snowflake involves three main steps:

  1. Creating a Share
  2. Adding Objects to the Created Share
  3. Adding Accounts to the Share

Step 1: Creating A Share

Shares are objects on Snowflake encapsulating all your information for database sharing. The first step to implementing data sharing on Snowflake is actually to create the share. To start, click ‘Create Share’ from within the Snowflake platform.

A share consists of any of the following:

  • Privileges granting access to the schema with objects for sharing and the database
  • Access privileges granted to the database’s specific objects
  • The consumer accounts where the objects will be shared

A good way to understand a share is to think of it as a container waiting to be filled with objects.

Step 2: Adding Objects to the Created Share

Once you’ve created a share, you’ll need to add objects to it. To do so, click the ‘GRANT <privilege>… TO SHARE’ button. This grants privileges to the following objects for sharing:

  • Usage privilege on the intended database for sharing
  • Usage privilege on database schemas with objects you want to share

One thing to note is that primary database replication is blocked if there are existing external tables in the database. You’ll need to verify that there are no external tables before you can replicate any primary database.

Step 3: Adding Accounts to the Share

Adding accounts to the share is done by using the ‘ALTER SHARE’ option. You can also use ‘SHOW GRANTS’ to review the added accounts. Once all steps are done, the share is ready for consumption by several accounts.

Secure Data Sharing Function in Snowflake

Secure data sharing on Snowflake ensures there’s no actual data transferred between accounts. Sharing is through Snowflake’s metadata and services layer store. And because of this concept, no storage space is taken up.

So, what happens when your storage space is not occupied by shared data? The data you obtained doesn’t contribute to your monthly storage charges.

Also, because no actual data is exchanged, data sharing on Snowflake data share is easy to set up. Data providers create a database for sharing in their accounts and can then grant access to the database’s specific objects. For the data consumers’ side, the database created has a read-only file available from the share.

Data sharing occurs between a data provider and a data consumer. Below is a summary of the differences between consumers and providers.

Providers Consumers
A Snowflake account creating shares to become available for consumption by other Snowflake accounts A Snowflake account that creates a database from the share created by the data provider
Responsible for sharing a database with one or several accounts on Snowflake Has access to all the objects placed in the database
Can create unlimited shares and Can consume unlimited shares from data providers
Give access to unlimited Snowflake accounts Limited to creating a single database per share

Data providers on Snowflake also gain access to usage metrics of data consumers viewing their data. These metrics include the consumer’s account and organization name on Snowflake and statistics on their data consumption.

Data providers can also access any information consumers submit for personalized listings, such as their company name or business email.

Neither of these are features that consumers have access to within the Snowflake platform.

Best Practices for Secure Data Sharing

Best Practices for Secure Data Sharing

When it comes to data exchange, there are a few best practices to follow. This is important for eradicating the challenges associated with seamless data collaboration and ensuring that critical data remains secure. 

Although there are many best practices that you can implement, a few that are specific to Snowflake data share include:

  • Limiting time-data access
  • Leveraging data clean rooms
  • Implementing data governance and data exchange

Decrease Time-Data Access

One of the limitations of data sharing is that it can be time-consuming. However, limiting time-data access is important for ensuring a positive user experience and efficient communication about key pieces of information.

Snowflake’s data-sharing technology enables providers to share live and ready-to-query data in minutes instead of experiencing delays. They do this by using multiple data clouds and avoiding ETL.

ETL is the process of extraction, transformation, and loading, and is a slow and time-consuming process for data sharing. By avoiding it, Snowflake makes data more accessible to consumers and allows them to start querying right away.

Leverage Data Clean Rooms

Data clean rooms are frameworks that don’t require your data to be transferred into a different environment. They’re private, secure environments that allow multiple organizations to collaborate on data for combined analyses. Data clean rooms also limit the queries to be run on each data.

But, of course, certain guidelines and restrictions should be followed to ensure data is kept secure and confidential.

For one thing, guidelines specify which data can enter clean rooms and how they can be joined and shared with the clean room’s other data. They also dictate what analytics can evaluate clean room data and which data can exit from the clean room.

Snowflake’s data clean rooms are different from traditional data clean room implementations. This platform adopts a unique model with exceptional architecture to simplify data sharing.

A data clean room Snowflake runs provides organizations with complete data control in their Snowflake account. There’s no need for organizations to copy, move, share, and perform data analyses when leveraging data from Snowflake’s data clean rooms.

Snowflake’s data clean rooms also allow data analysis across several data clouds without exposing information to one another. This protects data from re-identification or reverse engineering, especially when it’s highly sensitive.

Data Governance and Data Exchange

A data governance model involves managing the security, integrity, and availability of information in businesses. Data governance is made more accessible with Snowflake, especially with its unique data clean room models. As providers and consumers, you can experience the following management features:

  • Stored procedures for validating and generating query requests
  • Row access policies for organizations to match customer data without risking the exposure of any party’s PII
  • Secure data sharing of tables across Snowflake accounts without moving data outside of the platform

These features help ensure the smooth transfer of data through Snowflake, while also protecting the integrity and security of data.


Snowflake is a robust platform enabling data sharing, warehousing, and engineering. This platform allows data providers and consumers to collaborate and analyze data more efficiently and securely.

Snowflake has advanced security features, ensuring data shared is not leaked or exposed to each part. And with its quick data-sharing quality, organizations can share the information they need without taking up storage space and adding extra fees.

Despite these benefits, Snowflake is best taken advantage of when used through Revelate. Revelate is a data commercialization platform that grants external users access to Snowflake data without setting up an account. It promotes inclusivity, eradicating barriers to accessing the data you need for business.

The collaboration of Revelate and Snowflake will create a massive difference in your data-sharing experience. It guarantees quick, reliable, and secure sharing without experiencing delays and information leakage.

If you’re ready to transform the way you share and handle data, Revelate’s Snowflake data integration might be the right choice.

Unlock Your Data's Potential with Revelate

Revelate provides a suite of capabilities for data sharing and data commercialization for our customers to fully realize the value of their data. Harness the power of your data today!

Get Started