Identifying Connected Data Technology

July 28, 2016


National Security Agency (NSA)

Laboratory: National Security Agency (NSA)

Technology: Identifying Connected Data in a Relational Database

Opportunity: This NSA technology has completed all of its developmental stages and is ready to be licensed for commercial use.

Details: This technology leverages Structured Query Language (SQL) in relational databases to discover connected data. This method is faster and less error-prone than other query methods because data does not need to be transformed, thus allowing the algorithm to operate in the database’s natural information storage format. This enables efficient discovery of connected data and easy identification of a common label. If it is possible to traverse the database from node A to node B, then both nodes are assigned the same label. This approach is limited only by the processing capacity of the database and delivers faster results than other methods.

Benefits: The connected data technology is faster and less error-prone than manual methods of determining derived relations, and is able to be quickly integrated with existing infrastructures and applications. The technology is also scalable and can handle trillions of records.

Other benefits are that it uses SQL—a standard industry tool—to determine derived relations among tables, and queries are now limited only by the processing capacity of the database.

Potential Applications: This unique connected data technology can be applied in the fields of genetics, epidemiology, social media, telecommunications and retail.

Contact: For additional information on this technology, contact the National Security Agency’s Office of Research & Technology Applications at