What is Data Matching?
Data matching can best be described as a process of comparing two or more sets of gathered data. It is done to dispose of duplicate contents. In short, data matching permits more precise and accurate searches on large amounts of data
When Data Matching Started?
The history of data matching goes a long way. Even before the use of computers researchers and statisticians focused on highlighting records with similar entity. In 1946 Dunn proposed the idea of assembling a book of life for every individual starting from his birth till his death. In between it suggested containing information related to health and social security record and marriage /divorce record. The basic purpose was to assist governments to improve national statistics and provide better services. He was also aware of possibilities of errors and duplication in this book of life.
It was however in 1950s and early 1960s that the use of computers started for data matching.
Who Can Use Data Matching?
Accurate, up-to-date and complete identity information is essential for several reasons both for public and private sector organizations. Business, universities, government agencies and other organizations can take equal benefit from data matching. Data matching tools are more helpful for government agencies as a vigilant check must be kept on fake or fraud information to guard public money. But that does not mean that public sector companies can’t take advantage from these tools. Many companies depend on large amount of information, thus these tools are equally beneficial for organizations dealing in banking, education, marketing or retail.
Where Data Matching Can Be Used?
There are many areas where data matching can be used. Few of the examples are given below:
- In the past few years E-Commerce has expanded dramatically and many shopping platforms can link products that are available at multiple online stores but have varied description
- To advertise or sell their products businesses use large mailing lists. These may consist of coarse data or duplicate records. Data matching software can help to merge all such records
- Since data matching helps keeping a database organized it increased storage utilization and network data transfer
- To study side effects of particular drugs or reactions to the treatments patients’ medical records can be used. In this situation privacy can be a major issue hence it must be made sure that those attributes are not used that can easily identify patients
- Data matching can help identify fraudulent transactions, accounts or credit cards
- Governments all around the world collect information from various sources and databases. Matching up these databases helps government to generate accurate statistical reports and thus make policies accordingly
Why Data Matching Should Be Used?
Data matches reduce the costs associated with duplicate records, helps in gaining a more accurate single view of customer data. The most important data quality it offers is accuracy and consistency. It also permits comparisons between different data; identify patterns or elements that need further investigation or research. It also keeps unnecessary information at a minimum level; hence high levels of accuracy can be maintained.
How Data Matching Can Be Done?
Today there are several data tools and options available in the market. Many of these are either stand alone products that specialize in a certain type of application or data matching is one component of much bigger intelligent business solutions. Companies and government agencies can opt for data matching software as per their requirement and budget
There are many options for data matching available