“It wasn’t even time for lunch, and ScanWriter had already processed 1000 pages of my CDR… I felt like a rock star!”
New York, NY
A special agent was told to manually prepare telephone records for analysis, a difficult task because of the large data size and complex data structure.
ScanWriter for Excel
A Special Agent’s Secret Weapon for Automating Telephone Analysis
Analyzing CDRs requires organizational and data interpreting skills. In this case, a special agent received an AT&T report in PDF containing 2000 pages of call information.
The agent remembers reviewing the files and explains, “I would spend weeks and months hand entering each line into Excel… Not only is this time consuming… I [had] to recheck for typos…”
In the past, the agent tried using a generic Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to capture the data from a similar report. He remembers spending weeks teaching the software what to capture then more time reformatting the output in Excel.
With about 1 million data items to enter for this case, the agent states, “[CDRs] can be overwhelming…”
Once the agency purchased the ScanWriter license, the agent could not wait to complete his case. Following a live, hands-on training, he applied his new tool and skills.
At 4.75 seconds per page, ScanWriter processed the CDRs. The agent reported, “It wasn’t even time for lunch, and ScanWriter had already processed 1000 pages of my CDRs. I was able to work on other parts of the case… I felt like a rock star!”
Later that afternoon, the agent reviewed the data and used the Compare Data® tool to verify its completeness and accuracy. During this process, he had a few questions and contacted our help desk for some pointers.
To complete the analysis, the agent exported the ScanWriter data into the integrated Power BI Telephone Model. This created multiple visualizations and, as the agent states, “This is where my data comes alive…”
He discovered connections between four different phone numbers and proved that there had been hours of communications between the parties within a specific time frame.
The agent was able to complete his CDRs analysis in one day. Thanks to ScanWriter’s accuracy features, he was confident that the data was correct and complete.
The agent notes, “Timing is crucial. I have so many cases and limited time to review them… Being able to prioritize other tasks while processing 2000 pages at the same time alleviates the stress of my job.”
By completing the case and creating dynamic visualizations to show in court, the agent provided evidence of criminal activity.
With much excitement, the agent offered his insightful findings to his joint task force colleagues, and he continued to explain, “Everyone wanted to know my secret… I impressed them with my spreadsheets and my graphs… I told them that they should get ScanWriter…”
“Everyone wanted to know my secret… I impressed them with my spreadsheets and my graphs… I told them that they should get ScanWriter.”
Special Agent, New York, NY