Industry influencers, academicians, and other prominent stakeholders certainly agree that big data has become a big game changer in most, if not all, types of modern industries over the last few years. As big data continues to permeate our day-to-day lives, there has been a significant shift of focus from the hype surrounding it to finding real value in its use.
While understanding the value of big data continues to remain a challenge, other practical challenges including funding and return on investment and skills continue to remain at the forefront for a number of different industries that are adopting big data. With that said, a Gartner Survey for 2015 shows that more than 75% of companies are investing or are planning to invest in big data in the next two years. These findings represent a significant increase from a similar survey done in 2012 which indicated that 58% of companies invested or were planning to invest in big data within the next 2 years.
Generally, most organizations have several goals for adopting big data projects. While the primary goal for most organizations is to enhance customer experience, other goals include cost reduction, better targeted marketing and making existing processes more efficient. In recent times, data breaches have also made enhanced security an important goal that big data projects seek to incorporate.
More importantly however, where do you stand when it comes to big data? You will very likely find that you are either:
- Trying to decide whether there is true value in big data or not
- Evaluating the size of the market opportunity
- Developing new services and products that will utilize big data
- Already utilizing big data solutionsRepositioning existing services and products to utilize big data, or
- Already utilizing big data solutions
Preparing for a career in Data Science? Take this test to know where you stand!
With this in mind, having a bird’s eye view of big data and its application in different industries will help you better appreciate what your role is or what it is likely to be in the future, in your industry or across different industries.
Source: Big Data overview, use cases, technology and opportunities. Presented at Everis by Wilson Lucas slide 23 of 25 on the 11th of April 2013 (note that the diagram shows potential big data opportunities)
In this article, I shall examine 10 industry verticals that are using big data, industry-specific challenges that these industries face, and how big data solves these challenges. I shall additionally mention some examples of big data providers that are offering solutions in the specific industries.
1. Banking and Securities
Industry-Specific big data challenges
A study of 16 projects in 10 top investment and retail banks shows that the challenges in this industry include: securities fraud early warning, tick analytics, card fraud detection, archival of audit trails, enterprise credit risk reporting, trade visibility, customer data transformation, social analytics for trading, IT operations analytics, and IT policy compliance analytics, among others.
Applications of big data in the banking and securities industry
The Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) is using big data to monitor financial market activity. They are currently using network analytics and natural language processors to catch illegal trading activity in the financial markets.
Retail traders, Big banks, hedge funds and other so-called ‘big boys’ in the financial markets use big data for trade analytics used in high frequency trading, pre-trade decision-support analytics, sentiment measurement, Predictive Analytics etc.
This industry also heavily relies on big data for risk analytics including; anti-money laundering, demand enterprise risk management, "Know Your Customer", and fraud mitigation.
Big Data providers specific to this industry include: 1010data, Panopticon Software, Streambase Systems, Nice Actimize and Quartet FS