How to find your role in the IoT data flood


The march towards a connected world is bringing forth a new breed of analyst. Just as connecting towns and cities with highways brought on the need for roadside diners, rest stops and increased police presence; connecting individuals and their behaviours with devices, programs and businesses creates a need for an information mediator.

A report released by Cisco refers to this role as the ‘Data Infomediary’; a role that is necessary “within the big data analytics ecosystem…if the industry is to reach its ultimate potential and satisfy all of the big data hype.”

Data Infomediaries will live at the intersection of IoT, big data and those who rely on that data to make decisions. It is expected that within the role, there will be four key objectives: federation, innovation, governance and scale.


Currently, no marketplace exists for big data. Companies can buy and sell specific sets of data but the uninhibited exchange and easy amassing of information to find and recognise trends does not exist. Companies and industries that have excelled at data collection and analysis in the absence of IoT are positioned to reap the greatest rewards.

Within the insurance industry, for example, it is not uncommon for one company to supplement their own claims data with that from third-party databases. The third-party databases compile data from social media feeds and industry sources to look for anomalies and identify fraud.

Data Infomediaries provide a method of transition that alleviates legal and business concerns associated with acquiring and using data. This opens the doors for companies of all sizes to benefit from big data.


Developing new ways of handling data, especially in the areas of authentication and management, is absolutely necessary. Both companies and end-users struggle to keep-up with numerous credentialing and log-in requirements and with re-entering information on various sites.

Businesses need the ability to quickly verify that data is sound and can be considered in statistical analyses however managing these responsibilities in-house can be overwhelming. Data infomediaries will supply businesses with vetted data in ready-to-use formats.


Within the Wild West of big data, there is little oversight or self-governance which leads government agencies to restrict the use of data by companies of all sizes. Data infomediaries create order and establish industry standards for the use of data. This role also builds trust with the consumer generating the data so that the consumer feels comfortable allowing their information to be used – contributing to a healthier, overall ecosystem.


Perhaps the largest stumbling block facing many organizations is the sheer volume of data that must be stored, accessed and processed in order for the value to be extracted. Data infomediaries will become the subject matter experts in this field and will develop innovative and cost-effective solutions to these problems; opening the door for companies to gain access to beneficial analysis results.

What’s next?

The role of Data Infomediary is still in its infancy. Companies like Apple, Amazon, and Facebook are already developing solutions for the storage, access and processing of large volumes of data. These solutions are capable of processing multiple data analysis request simultaneously while continuing to function as storage and recall.

Developing software solutions that will answer the need for dynamic analysis based on the inputs of data will experience particularly high demand. The solutions must be robust, reliable, efficient and secure while still allowing multiple, vetted access points.

Those entering the Data Infomediary space rely on experienced developers to craft solutions that will meet these strict needs while incorporating analytical IP and governance.

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