When the product is ready to launch, most preparations are being done in a complete secrecy. It can be a really frightening experience to put the unreleased product into the hands of beta testers. Luckily there are a number of ways how to increase the security of any beta test.
- Keep Quiet Your Test AnnouncementYou should limit the announcement of your beta test to the smallest audience possible. Nevertheless you still should have an adequate number of testers for your project. This greatly decreases the odds of any competitors slipping in.
- Start With Confidentiality ResponsibilitiesWhile primary announcing the test you should make a stress on the importance of confidentiality. Testers should have a clear understanding of these requirements. This is also the first place to make it clear that competitors and members of the press are not welcomed in your test.
- Be Selective While Hiring TestersIt’s important to be choosy about who involved in your test. All candidates should be taken through an application process. You need to see if they fit your target market.
- Limit Your Tester Team SizeThe more testers you have the greater chance that someone will leak out secret information, unintentionally or on purpose. Keeping your team small can significantly cut down the risk of leakage.
- NDA as a MustAlways have a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA). The NDA is your best friend for assuring secrecy. It makes a tester realize that you take this very seriously and that there will be consequences in case they would decide to share secret details. Everyone is scared of legal issues. It’s essential that this fear can serve to your advantage.
- Make Your NDA Simple and EasyBe clear while explaining the specific details of your NDA to every tester. Do we always read all pages of license agreement, or some other important form? Make sure your testers have read them all. Remind them about what they’re signing and explain the terms simply. You can even read some outlines from the NDA and then remind them what consequences may be if they ignore the agreement.
- Maintain the Secrecy MessageIt’s also important to consistently evoke the concept of secrecy throughout your communication with testers. Subtle details such as having “confidential” noted on beta documents or sending periodic reminders via email about confidentiality help people understand the importance of security. If you keep secrecy at the forefront, so will your testers.
- Time-bomb Beta SoftwareThe threat of piracy should be considered in every beta test. Thus all beta software should include an expiration date at which point it will stop functioning. That will decrease the risk of disclosure from casual piracy.
- Clearly Identify Beta StatusMake sure that you marked your product as an unreleased beta product. In case of software, state that the software is a beta release. If product leaked, it’ll be obvious to customers that the product is incomplete and not representative of a purchased product. For physical products, include serial numbers and other details so that testers realize the hardware can be traced back to them.
- Provide Forum for TestersInformation is being shared every second nowadays. Various sites such as Facebook and Twitter encourage users to share everything they experience. That is not exactly what you need. It can be solved easily by providing an online forum. By providing a forum for your testers, you’re allowing them to openly share their experiences.
Testfort can provide you with a software testing team for checking the quality of your product under high privacy.