Category Archives: Identity Resolution

Harnessing Social Media With Informatica

Improving sales and service through customer centricity requires listening to and understanding your customers. And where are customers speaking these days?

You guessed it—social media. Just think about it. Each day, customers tweet 50 million times on Twitter and update their Facebook status 60 million times. Add in LinkedIn and user reviews and YouTube and blog commentary and more and you’ve got a customer data gold mine and a new frontier for marketing.


Posted in Cloud Computing, Customer Acquisition & Retention, Customer Services, Customers, Data Aggregation, Data Governance, Data Integration, Data Integration Platform, Data Quality, Data Synchronization, Enterprise Data Management, Financial Services, Healthcare, Identity Resolution, Master Data Management, Pervasive Data Quality, Public Sector, Telecommunications, Vertical | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments


I am very honored to have been asked to become a contributing blogger to Informatica Perspectives, and I am looking forward to sharing thoughts about what I like to refer to as “information utility.” The online version of the American Heritage Dictionary defines utility as “The quality or condition of being useful,” and I would like to adapt that definition for my own purposes: establishing information utility is the process of ensuring the quality and usefulness of information.

Luckily, over the past 15 years I have been actively pursuing a number of activities and research areas that fundamental to information utility, ranging from data cleansing, data quality, identity resolution, data integration, master data management, business intelligence, data mining, all the way to data governance. Perhaps you may already be familiar with some of my monthly columns at the Business Intelligence Network, or having read one of my books on Master Data Management or Data Quality. I hope to share my experiences as well as experiences our consulting practice has had with our clients in a way that can help you improve your organization’s information utility.

And I am always looking for feedback – I hope that my entries will inspire readers to share their own thoughts and experiences as well!

Posted in Data Governance, Data Quality, Identity Resolution, Master Data Management, Pervasive Data Quality, Profiling, Scorecarding | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Can Data Quality Solve A 110 Billion Dollar Problem?

Recently the US Senate passed legislation, the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act, which would require US federal agencies to identify and reduce improper payments.  Improper payments are defined as mistakes, waste, fraud, and abuse cumulatively costing the US tax payers $110 billion per year and growing.  This is a staggering sum.  Think about it – think of all of the things that we could fund either through government programs or back into our pockets.  The financial incentive is there, but the challenge for the federal government is how to discover and prevent these improper payments. (more…)

Posted in Business Impact / Benefits, Data Governance, Data Quality, Governance, Risk and Compliance, Identity Resolution, Master Data Management, Pervasive Data Quality, Profiling, Public Sector, Scorecarding | 5 Comments

Data Tales From Afar

With our Informatica9 World Tour in full swing, I have found the last month to be extremely exhilarating meeting clients across North America, South America, Europe and Australia. I have met with banking clients in New York, major telco operators in Brazil, government institutions in Sweden and retailers in Australia.

Several people have asked me if there have been any major differences from region to region. My observation is “yes … and no”. Let me explain:


Posted in Application ILM, Business Impact / Benefits, CIO, Cloud Computing, Data Integration, Data Integration Platform, Data Quality, Database Archiving, Identity Resolution, Master Data Management, Operational Efficiency | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Uncovering Terror Plots: Does Data Mining Work?

The recent article NY Bomb Plot Highlights Limitations of Data Mining concludes that data mining and analysis techniques are ineffective in uncovering terror plots.

No single technique or approach, whether based on data mining, human intelligence or other monitoring will ever be 100% comprehensive. This is why the most effective solution is a combination of all tools and techniques to ensure that risk is lowered. The next question that needs to be asked is whether data mining should be a part of such a comprehensive toolkit – and for that we need to judge how successful data mining has been.


Posted in Complex Event Processing, Data Integration, Identity Resolution | Leave a comment

Why Tax Agencies Need A Unified View Of The Taxpayer

The infamous April 15th deadline is drawing near.  Like many of you, I spent last weekend filling out my tax returns.  Did you know that, with over 140 million taxpayers in the US, income tax evasion and fraud are the main sources of lost tax revenue?  In 2007, it was close to $350 billion — about 14% of the US government’s revenue for the fiscal year.  How can tax and revenue agencies like the IRS and California’s Franchise Tax Board efficiently detect fraud and collect lost tax revenue?

One of the keys to detecting fraud is having a clear view of the taxpayer population.  Creating a ‘Unified View of Taxpayer’ can help agencies understand a taxpayer’s history, accurately identify honest taxpayers from fraudulent ones, detect tax payment anomalies, link taxpayers to their existing financial transactions to detect suspicious patterns and concentrate agency resources on truly suspicious tax returns for auditing purposes. (more…)

Posted in Data Quality, Identity Resolution, Master Data Management, Public Sector | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Refilling State Coffers After The Recession

While the market is showing signs of recovery from the “Great Recession” most state budgets have been feeling the squeeze from the lag in recovery. In a recent article titled The Sorry State of Finances, Liam Denning explained that, “55% of state revenue, before federal transfers, comes from personal and corporate income tax.” Denning also stated that, “the first three quarters of 2009 were the worst for state tax since at least 1963.”

There is an apparent lag between recovery in the private sector and a state receiving tax revenue. So what can states do about this problem while they suffer in the red? Mr. Denning said, “Since states can’t run general funding deficits, closing gaps mean raising taxes, cutting services and resorting to one-time measures.” Mr. Denning’s list of solutions is certainly accurate, but does it include all options that states have? What about employing new technology to discover fraud or recover uncollected revenue? (more…)

Posted in Business Impact / Benefits, Data Quality, Data Services, Identity Resolution, Integration Competency Centers, Master Data Management, Public Sector, SaaS | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Tell Me All About The Informatica Marketplace

I am very fortunate to have a CIO role that extends beyond the traditional responsibilities of IT. Part of my role includes the strategy and implementation of the recently launched Informatica Marketplace.

The Informatica Marketplace has generated a lot of buzz with our customers and partners. Last week while I was presenting at the Pacific Crest Annual Cloud Computing Conference I heard the excitement about our new offering from many of the attendees. Mostly, people appreciated our continued thought leadership and commitment to providing an open platform to host solutions for data integration, data quality and data management. And yes, it is an open platform to host solutions that not only support Informatica, but other vendors too – even competitors. Our fundamental belief is that the hand of free enterprise will ultimately win, so we are willing to provide an open platform to do so.

Here are a few questions I’ve heard and answered over the last few weeks: (more…)

Posted in Application Retirement, B2B Data Exchange, Business/IT Collaboration, CIO, Cloud Computing, Customers, Data Integration, Data Quality, Data Services, Data Synchronization, Data Warehousing, Identity Resolution, Informatica Events, Pervasive Data Quality, SaaS | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Global-hopping Customer Data (Part 2)

Continuing the discussion started in Globe-hopping Customer Data I’d like to examine the issues related to identifying which customers you do NOT want to do business with.

One of our customers – a major bank in Saudi Arabia – learned first-hand the complexities that arise from having to comply with watchlists from multiple countries. At a minimum, the bank had to screen customer data against the Saudi Arabian government watchlists (in Arabic script) and the US government watchlists (in Romanized/English).  To further complicate matters – the bank’s customer data was stored in two separate databases – Saudi customer data in Arabic script, and all other customers in Romanized form.  (more…)

Posted in Identity Resolution | Leave a comment

Globe-hopping Customer Data

Over the past few months, an increasing portion of my conversations with customers has been about globalization.  The recent financial crisis has caused many companies to focus more on market diversification. Some traditional markets are experiencing slow or negative growth and some emerging markets have recovered faster than others.  In the global search for customers, crossing geographic boundaries has become less of an impediment and more of an opportunity.

Globalization and multi-country operations bring a whole host of complications ranging from tax implications and exchange rate fluctuations to labor regulations and cultural sensitivities.  However, one often overlooked aspect is the impact that globalization has on your enterprise data management strategy – and particularly – your customer data.


Posted in Identity Resolution, Master Data Management | 1 Comment