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Cool Blog: Enforcer for Identity Manager

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Bill Street

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Posted: 12 Jul 2006

Some of you may have seen the Friday Brainshare Keynote showing a new Eclipse based application called Enforcer. Enforcer is a sister application to Designer for Identity Manager. The goal of Enforcer is to create a set of tools to focus on Data Quality issues and improve the deployment process of Identity Manager. Enforcer will run standalone in a rich client application based on Eclipse or be a set of tools that can plug into Designer. Enforcer?s tools set will have a basic theme to Analyze, Enhance and Control.

Before customers set up an Identity Management solution, they spend a significant amount of time analyzing the data, scrubbing the data and understanding the business rules to write policy to keep the data in a reliable state. It is the first and key step in providing an Identity Management solution. Additionally, once an Identity solution is put into place then a customer must verify and reconcile that the these processes are maintaining consistent and reliable data.

Data scrubbing is the process of amending or removing data in a data warehouse that is incorrect, incomplete, improperly formatted, or duplicated. The benefits of data scrubbing include better compliance, enhanced security, improved quality of experience and cost reduction.

Failure to correct invalid data can be costly - process failures, system failures, security breaches, etc.


The first phase of preparing for an IDM project is to understand the data you are dealing with. As the first phase of the Enforcer methodology, Analysis, is specifically designed to discover the quality and characteristics of enterprise data sources. The goal of the Analysis phase is to completely view the quality and content of one to many data sources. Also, it is important to uncover data anomalies by inspecting the true content, structure and relationship hidden within enterprise data sources. Analysis of the data will provide a blueprint of the data problems you face.


The next phase is to improve the quality of the data or to Enhance it. With data enhancement procedures, you can correct errors, standardize information across multiple data sources and validate information that is inconsistent and inaccurate.


Once the data is clean and enriched, the job is not done, it is important to maintain consistent, accurate and reliable data. It will require continued control and monitoring. Enforcer can help by creating the policies that can be used in Designer or in the later development process of the implementation of a full IDM solution.

Enforcer is being developed using the same iterative model as Designer. We will release in milestones every 2 months. We have created an Enforcer product in Novell?s bugzilla system. If there are things you would like to see in Enforcer then as always, provide us with your feedback. Write an enhancement in Bugzilla or drop me an e-mail.

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