I need to copy database from production to development instance in SQL Server 2012 as I don't want to mess up the production server database.
Can someone suggest how I can do this ?
Backup from PROD
with COPY_ONLY, compression and restore it on DEV server is the best option.
Make sure to enable Instant File initialization to cut down the restore time.
I don't have a permissions to restore database. is it safe to use copy database ?
This might imply that you are not authorized to do such operation. You can ask your DBA to help you out once you have put in a proper support ticket.
Also, its quiet important to wipe out PII information when you do a restore on a NON PROD system - as @MichaelGreen pointed out.