The Homeland Security Department is adopting a federated database approach to information sharing, according to privacy recommendations presented by the department’s Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee.
A federated approach means that rather than consolidating databases into a single, centralized one, users can search multiple databases from a single point. The extent to which a federated approach creates in effect a virtual centralized database depends greatly on its implementation. The advisory committee says it recommends that the search query functionality–what it calls a “hub”–be limited to a display of pointers to participating DHS component databases, an audit log and a knowledge management tool.
The tool would be necessary to resolve a problem that crops up in federated access, the committee says–namely, the necessity of users from outside the component that maintains the database to make a judgment on the quality of the data retrieved through a federated search.
via Fierce Government IT, continued here.