I have a SQL Server 2016 database configured with AE in Production environment. Column Master key Certificate is available(under Windows Certificate Store -> Local Machine location) in a different server other than database server and the web server hosting ASP.NET application also has the Certificate to encrypt/decrypt data.
For troubleshooting or operational support purpose, we usually backup and restore this Production database to our staging/UAT environment on need basis.
After restoring the database, web app is NOT working as expected since it's missing the Certificate used to configure AE in Production environment.
As per the security policy, client is NOT willing to bring the AE Certificate from Windows Certificate Store to the target environment.
In this regard, what are the best practices to be followed to make the web app working when we restore database from one environment to another? Or is there any other approaches to make the web app working without bringing the Certificate?