Browse Definitions:

data hygiene

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Guide to managing a data quality assurance program
Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

Data hygiene is the collective processes conducted to ensure the cleanliness of data. Data is considered clean if it is relatively error-free. Dirty data can be caused by a number of factors including duplicate records, incomplete or outdated data, and the improper parsing of record fields from disparate systems. Errors can be introduced at any stage as data is entered, stored and managed.

Data quality is crucial to operational and transactional processes within the enterprise and to the reliability of business analytics (BA) / business intelligence (BI) reporting.

Data scrubbing, also called data cleansing, is the process of amending or removing data in a database that is incorrect, incomplete, improperly formatted, or duplicated. Typically the process involves updating it, standardizing it, and de-duplicating records to create a single view of the data, even even if it is stored in multiple disparate systems.

This was last updated in April 2013

Continue Reading About data hygiene

Join the conversation

1 comment

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

Data Hygiene is the state of data validity and reliability relative to its intended purposes. the functions of data hygiene include TL and scrubbing. data quality and data hygiene are synonomous and "relatively error-free" is not a performance nor quality measure since it cannot, itself, be measured


File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:


  • risk map (risk heat map)

    A risk map, also known as a risk heat map, is a data visualization tool for communicating specific risks an organization faces.

  • internal audit (IA)

    An internal audit (IA) is an organizational initiative to monitor and analyze its own business operations in order to determine ...

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...


  • federated identity management (FIM)

    Federated identity management (FIM) is an arrangement that can be made among multiple enterprises to let subscribers use the same...

  • cross-site scripting (XSS)

    Cross-site scripting (XSS) is a type of injection security attack in which an attacker injects data, such as a malicious script, ...

  • firewall

    In computing, a firewall is software or firmware that enforces a set of rules about what data packets will be allowed to enter or...



  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...


  • volume manager

    A volume manager is software within an operating system (OS) that controls capacity allocation for storage arrays.

  • external storage device

    An external storage device, also referred to as auxiliary storage and secondary storage, is a device that contains all the ...

  • NetApp SolidFire

    NetApp SolidFire is a business division of NetApp Inc. that specializes in all-flash storage systems.


  • hybrid hard disk drive (HDD)

    A hybrid hard disk drive is an electromechanical spinning hard disk that contains some amount of NAND Flash memory.