The importance of dark data is undeniable and, therefore, planning its management and auditing is a very wise decision. Dark data is associated with important advantages for the business, available to those who take the step of taking charge of these large volumes of unstructured and unidentified information that occupy the company’s systems.
How To Take Advantage Of The Benefits Of Dark Data For The Company?
Dark data is a source of opportunities that, due to the lack of identification and adequate information management, are moving away from the business, as access is complicated. Its value has to do with the information they contain, which is very valuable for promoting the business in different ways, such as:
- Server log files can report visitor behaviour to a website.
- Customer call detail records reveal customer feelings and opinions.
- Mobile geographic location data can provide traffic patterns.
Companies are turning down exciting opportunities by not taking advantage of the dark data. Although, it is also true that, to achieve this, they need better processes, more coordination and the technologies that allow them to properly use dark data.
How To Avoid The Problems That Dark Data Can Cause?
Dark data can cause reputational, financial and legal problems if not managed properly. In fact, companies that accumulate dark data already have problems, starting with those related to the cost of storage.
In addition to these kinds of practical issues, organizations could face the following problems caused by dark data:
- Legal and regulatory issues If the stored data falls within the scope of legal regulations that require its protection (which is what happens with credit card data, for example) its exposure would cause financial and legal responsibilities to the company.
- Risk of disclosure of business secrets Companies could, through deliberate or unintentional leaks, lose confidential or intellectual property data about business operations, products, financial status and business plans. This could have a negative impact on your future.
- Damage to reputation. Companies are seen as custodians of the data they collect, and that includes dark data. Therefore, any loss of data, especially confidential data, can result in damage to the image and name.
- Opportunity costs. If a company decides not to invest in dark data analysis and processing, but its competitors do, it is likely to lose market position.
Regularly auditing information, enforcing strong data encryption standards, and having data retention and secure deletion policies are ways to minimize risk and access the benefits of dark data. Although an investment needs to be made to harness the potential of obscure data, the effort is worth it, especially looking to the future and trying to avoid bigger problems.