• Adam Thurgar

Dealing with sensitive data

What do you do when you are asked to deal with sensitive data. I was asked by the legal department of a mortgage provider to investigate some customer data. This was sensitive information about mortgages, interest rates and repayments.

I was the only person who was allowed to look at this data, no help from my team and I was not to tell anybody what I was doing. Secret data business.

It became more of a problem with my T-SQL skills. Although my skills were adequate, there was a team member vastly more proficient. They could have written better queries and got the results a lot quicker. This is why you need to keep your T-SQL skills up to date and keep learning what has been added/changed to the language. It could make your life a lot easier and more efficient code.

Whilst going through the data I found the information that was needed, customers who had not had their honeymoon discount rate applied. This was corrected and the customers informed and paid their refunds.

I also found other anomalies, customers who had never made repayments and where effectively getting free money. Other customers who had two mortgages on the same property and a few other business related issues like the loan being greater than the value of the property. I passed this information onto the legal department and let them deal with it. In reality all of this data needed to be audited and verified, but the need for data cleansing is another story.

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