Dark Data: Origins, Impact, and Transformation

Dark data, as defined by Gartner, is the information assets that organizations collect, process, and store during regular business activities and generally fail to use for other purposes. For example, analytics, business relationships, and direct monetization. Organizations often retain dark data for compliance purposes only or use once, then file and forget, which incurs more expenses and risk than value.

Dark data that we overlook leads to relevant issues: it takes up huge space in data centers, generates greenhouse gas emissions, and in some cases, leads to incorrect conclusions and disastrous decisions and/or actions.

Responsible Computing issued a free publication of the white paper “Dark Data: Origins, Impact, and Transformation.” This paper addresses the relevant role data plays in business today and the significance of data in digital transformation. The origins of dark data will be explored, and the different types of dark data will be examined through a wealth of real-life examples.

Written by practitioners from the RC Working Group: Responsible Data Usage, the paper introduces ideas to support organizations in transforming dark data to their advantage, leading to deeper understanding, better decisions, and better choice of actions, ultimately leading to effective digital decarbonization.

A White Paper on Dark Data from the Responsible Data Usage Working Group Form