Channels -> Systems Integration
By: Philip Howard, Research Director - Data Management, Bloor Research
Published: 3rd March 2011
Copyright Bloor Research © 2011
In my article on identity resolution in January I stated that “I only know one vendor that specialises in this second type of identity resolution and that is IBM.” What I was referring to was the sort of identity resolution that understands criminals who have multiple aliases and, further, can figure out that this suspect lived in the same house as xyz two years ago, who is now engaged to be married to abc, who is the sister of known terrorist lmn, and so on and so forth.
Well, my mistake. It turns out that I was wrong: Infoglide (www.infoglide.com) also provides this sort of software. Truth to tell, I had always put Infoglide into the same camp as Identity Systems (part of Informatica) for conventional identity resolution, which is more closely related to data quality. Indeed, Infoglide does sometimes compete in this market (they do overlap). However, its customer base is primarily in federal and state government and financial services, which tells its own story, although it does have a presence in the retail and healthcare markets also.
Also worth noting is that, while the company has historically been focused primarily on North America, it is now forming partnerships elsewhere. For example, the Westminster Group is a UK-based partner. Infloglide has several existing UK-based customers.
There are a couple of interesting things to be aware of in Infloglide’s solution. The first is that it uses a federated approach. In other words, all data stays in the source system. More particularly, this approach lends itself to addressing external data sources as well as those that are internal to an organisation. For example, you can query Facebook or LexisNexis at the same time as internal databases.
Like IBM, Infoglide supports anonymous resolution. This is used when you want to make enquiries about an individual but data privacy laws get in the way of providing such information, for example between a bank in Switzerland and one in the United States. IBM’s approach is that the data is shipped but anonymised (masked, if you will) whereas Infoglide’s is that the data is not actually shipped at all. Nevertheless, both answer the question.
These approaches are both fine if used within a single banking corporation. You need the software installed at both ends of the connection but that’s fine in a single organisation. However, it isn’t fine if two different banks want to communicate with one another. With both IBM and Infoglide having implementations in this market this will likely mean that banks will have to have both sets of software in order to handle information requests from different sources. No doubt both of these vendors would love this, but it’s not good for the banks, or anyone else wanting to use this software.
The market for anonymous resolution has not yet reached critical mass but it will. At that point we are going to have a problem. IBM and Infoglide need to sit down together sooner rather than later to discuss coming to some sort of agreement about standards for interfacing between the two product sets.
Posted: 7th March 2011 | By Kevin Brenker :
vs Goliath, et al....
The key difference between IBM's Identity Resolution solution(s) and InfoGlide, I suspect, is that InfoGlide fully understands the power of the solution they have at their disposal to leverage data to ferret out "bad guys", and IBM largely is adding software "Lego blocks" to a corporate software portfolio. Jeff Jonas (IBM Distinguished Scientist, and father of IBM Identity Resolution/Anonymous Resolution) had made a bigger impact on identity fraud prior to the IBM acquisition, but as well all know, IBM can turn that around in short order. InfoGlide, it would seem, has a window of opportunity to build a leadership position in this critical technology space.
Posted: 8th March 2011 | By Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen :
We are continuously struggling with defining what it is we are doing like defining: What is data quality? What is Master Data? What is Identity Resolution?
It is a same same but different discussion. Traditional data matching (or record linkage) as seen in a data quality tool and master data management solution is the bright view: Being about finding duplicates and making a single business partner view (or single party view or single customer view). Identity resolution is the dark view: Preventing fraud and catching criminals, terrorists and other villains.
The Gartner Hype Cycle describes the dark view as Entity Resolution and Analysis. This discipline is approaching the expectation peak and will, according to Gartner, be absorbed by other disciplines as no one can tell the difference I guess.
Certainly there are poles. In an article from 2006 called Identity Resolution and Data Integration David Loshin said: There is a big difference between trying to determine if the same person is being mailed two catalogs instead of one and determining if the individual boarding the plane is on the terrorist list.
But there is also a grey zone.
From a business perspective for example the prevention of misuse of a restricted campaign offer is a bit of both sides. Here you want to avoid that an existing customer is using an offer only meant for new customers. How does that apply to members of the same household or the same company family tree? Or you want to avoid someone using an introduction offer twice by typing her name and address a bit different.
From a technical perspective I have an example from working with a newspaper in a big fraud scam described in the post Big Time ROI in Identity Resolution. Here I had no trouble using a traditional deduplication tool in discovering none obvious relationships. Also the relationships discovered in traditional data matching ends up quite nicely in hierarchy management within master data management.
And then there is the use of the words identity (resolution) versus entity (resolution).
My feeling is that we could use identity resolution for describing all kind of matching and linking with party master data and entity resolution could be used for describing all kind of matching and linking with all master data entity types as seen in multi-domain master data management. But thats just my words.
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