Microsoft SQL Server 2005
Customer & Partner Solution Brief

/ / SQL Server 2005 Improves Scalability, Performance of Risk-Management Solution
“Reporting Services gives us a tool that integrates with other Microsoft platform products, and it opens up our database to the information needed by the more skilled and demanding end user.”
Jan Willem de Lange, Director of Research and Development, NetEconomy

Business Needs

NetEconomy delivers real-time enterprise software solutions to financial institutions for monitoring transactions with the goal of preventing, detecting, and managing money-related crimes, including money laundering, employee fraud, external fraud and market abuse. Its flagship product, the ERASE Financial Crime Suite, monitors financial transactions such as cash and check deposits, wire transfers, and insider trades, and alerts its users in the event of any unusual or abnormal transactions that might suggest improper or illegal activity. Once alerts are generated, a step-by-step workflow with built-in case management guides users through a solution path, including investigation, case tracking, and reporting within one fully integrated environment.

The NetEconomy solution has long incorporated Microsoft® SQL Server™ (a part ofMicrosoft Windows Server System™ integrated server software) as its internal database, starting with SQL Server 6.5, through use most recently of SQL Server 2000. The ERASE solution uses the relational database management system (RDBMS) in SQL Server as a data warehouse for analyzing financial transactions against typical behavior of each account. NetEconomy customers like the ease of installation and maintenance that SQL Server enables. They also appreciate its integration with back-end products that are also based on Microsoft technology, such as Microsoft Office productivity applications.

“Financial institutions are becoming increasingly aware that automated systems, messaging, and practice management can significantly reduce their risk exposure,” says Jan Willem de Lange, Director of Research and Development at NetEconomy. “NetEconomy’s ERASE solution, combined with Microsoft technology, uniquely addresses the complexities and challenges of effectively managing enterprise risk.”

As a product, SQL Server offers scalability as a critical strength. de Lange says he expects ever increasing numbers of transactions in the coming years, and an increasingly centralized deployment approach by banks, resulting in even more massive volumes to be processed.

For that reason, NetEconomy is committed to:

Providing its customers with a solution that will continue to effectively scale to analyze

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the enormous transaction volumes encountered by its customers.

Preserving the integration and maintenance features and capabilities desired by its customers.


To capitalize on scalability and performance enhancements in SQL Server 2005, NetEconomy decided to incorporate it as its internal database. In so doing, they were able to take advantage of new features such as:

Online indexing operations, which allow updates to a database while it is being analyzed. For example, users can continue to make updates to the underlying data and perform queries against the data in a clustered index while it is being rebuilt.

Database snapshots an online read-only view of historic transaction data.

Snapshot isolation, whichenables continued high performance during database queries.

Database mirroring, which extends log shipping capabilities by setting up a mirror database on a standby server, thereby enhancing system availability.

Database partitioning that allows easier analysis of greater volumes of data by creating partitions in the data cubes.

Security enhancements that protect the database from unwanted access or tampering.


NetEconomy believes customers can expect significant performance and scalability improvements with the incorporation of SQL Server 2005 into its solution. “Both online indexing and database snapshots give more flexibility in maintaining large volumes of data,” de Lange says. Database mirroring, along with an improved online recovery function, will also help customers reduce downtime and boost availability to the system. “Where database snapshots help us maintain the vast amount of historic data that has to remain online cause of regulatory requirements, snapshot isolation helps boost performance,” says de Lange. “Our end users can query the database during their investigation without blocking the import process running 24/7.”

de Lange also says customers are interested in the SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services component, commenting that many customers may wish to use this integrated feature instead of other more loosely coupled report generators currently in use. “Reporting Services gives us a tool that integrates with other Microsoft platform products, and it opens up our database to the information needed by the more skilled and demanding end user,” he says.

Given that NetEconomy customers use ERASE to detect serious crimes such as fraud, money laundering or identity theft, he says they also appreciate the security enhancements in SQL Server 2005. These include database encryption, secure default settings, password policy enforcement, fine-grained permissions control, and an enhanced security model.

de Lange says NetEconomy is not yet aggressively implementing functionality specific to SQL Server 2005, as their customers require full back-compatibility to SQL Server 2000. Once most have upgraded to ERASE versions based on SQL Server 2005, he says, ERASE may incorporate more SQL Server 2005 innovations. These may include Notification Services, which allows the building of advanced publication and subscription applications; Service Broker, which distributes asynchronous messages to internal or external systems (such as inventory, shipping, and credit card systems), speeding up job processing; and common language runtime (CLR) integration, which allows customers to code stored procedures, functions, and triggers in the Microsoft .NET Framework language of their choice. “These features would provide us with better integrated functionality,” de Lange says.

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Document published October 2005