Clean up your Databases

Are your communications as efficient as they could be, or are you working with bad data?

Whether you work for a call centre, an insurer, or a marketing department, you will be wasting time and money by reaching out to an outdated phone number. Unfortunately, a database replete with unusable contacts is easy to obtain and complicated to deal with without the right tools.

Contact details can expire for any number of reasons: a change in the device; a number being recycled to another user; or – if you work in B2B – your contact changing jobs, which will leave you needing to find accurate details for their replacement.

Number recycling in particular can be troublesome, when a phone number goes unused, it could be repossessed by the mobile operator in as little as 1-3 months. Once this has been completed, the number is put back into circulation to be used by another person. If you send secure information to a phone number that has been recycled, you may find yourself breaching confidentiality, as someone other than your intended recipient receives the communication. This can happen for any number, and from an outside perspective, there are limited ways to differentiate between users.

Likewise, there are a small number of ways to verify customer information, but almost all are a combination of costly, imprecise, or time-consuming.

Fortunately, mobile data can streamline data validation, making your databases as clean and useful as possible in very little time.

The magic of mobile data

What better way is there to check that a mobile number is real and useable for your purpose than pulling information from the mobile networks themselves? Mobile network operators associate data points with the phone numbers in their network, this includes information on the customer which is required when a contract is established – such as name, address, and age – as well as historical information about the activity of the number.

Mobile data is securely handled by the operators, as it contains confidential information. However, solution providers such as Phronesis can query this data using their customisable APIs to find out if the information you have is accurate.

This can help to clean databases by asking several questions…

Is the number valid?

If a number is fundamentally flawed, then you won’t be able to use it at all. Mobile network data is able to discover if a number is: real and in the right format, in service and assigned to the right network.

Have there been any recent changes?

Mobile data is able to detect if a phone number has undergone recycling, if this has occurred since you acquired the number, it is likely that it no longer belongs to the person you are hoping to reach. Likewise, MNO data can also tell you if and when a SIM or device has been changed, as such events may also be cause for concern.

Does the personal information match?

By checking the information in your database, such as name, address, and date of birth against the information assigned to the number by the operator, you can ensure that the number is owned by the person you are hoping to reach.

By checking the above – and more – you will be able to turn outdated databases into clean and completely useable sources of contact information, saving you time and money. What’s more, this process can work on whatever scale is needed: from a full database scan, to singular checks when a new number is added, or just before an outgoing call is conducted.

Mobile data aggregators and solution providers such as Phronesis make this process easy, by providing tailored APIs which streamline the process of cleaning a database. Reach out today if you want to find out more about how mobile data can help your business.