CA's Neugents will help detect fraud, track trends

CA's Neugents will help detect fraud, track trends

Neural network agents are out of the math lab and ready to make crime predictions, vendor says

By Susan M. Menke

GCN Staff

Neural network agents known as Neugents ii will help federal agencies detect fraud as well as better manage recruitment, logistics and spending, predicted Otto Guenther, a retired Army lieutenant general who now heads Computer Associates International Inc.'s federal systems group.

After an initial period of learning, Guenther said, a Neugent ii not only 'recognizes changing conditions but predicts an outcome and suggests actions.'

The self-contained Neugent ii software varies in size depending on the databases and other information systems it analyzes.

They need not be CA's database brands.

A Neugent 'is only as good as the data you point it at,' said Carl Hartman, vice president of CA's electronic business management unit.

The $225,000 cost of one Neugent ii server license 'sounds like a lot,' he said, 'but you're talking about doing work on your core business problems.' An agency might expect to recover the license cost within a few months, he said, because the Neugent technology can perceive and learn from up to 1,200 patterns simultaneously''too much data for humans to deal with.'

Unlimited numbers of clients can set up search patterns via wizardlike interfaces to the Neugent ii software, which requires 'a server with plenty of horsepower' running Microsoft Windows NT or Unix, he said.

Although CA first released Neugents several years ago and neural networks have been around much longer, they required 'math doctorates to get up and running,' Hartman said. 'Now they're ready for any business user.'

A Neugent ii operates in real time, but only after it has spent time learning about the usual patterns in the data it analyzes. Then it begins to notify its users whenever the patterns change, 'chances are, on a real-time screen,' Hartman said.

Guenther said New Scotland Yard in Britain has under way a proof-of-concept trial of Neugent ii technology for predicting future sites and perpetrators of minor crimes such as robbery. He said the first U.S. government trials could come in 'critical connectivity predictions for big defense backbone networks.'

Contact Computer Associates at 703-708-3000.

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