Quality of Information Retrieved from Unverified Sources Within Information Technology: A Qualitative Case Study

Quality of Information Retrieved from Unverified Sources Within Information Technology: A Qualitative Case Study

Author: 
Jamie D. Rost
Program of study: 
D.M./IST
Abstract: 
The increased reliance on accurate information within the organization and the accessibility of unverified information present risks related to the possible application of inaccurate information. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to identify the processes used by information technology (IT) professionals to acquire and validate information from unverified sources to answer the primary research question, “What processes do IT professionals use to support and identify the validity of information acquired from unverified sources?” Twenty-three IT professionals shared their experiences through semi-structured interviews and explained the processes used to assess and apply information from public sources as well as the implications related to these processes. Eight unique themes were identified associated with the processing of information. Each of the themes contributed to the identification of established processes to measure information accuracy using factors such as experience, education, information source, application, availability and perceived importance of the information to determine the assessment protocol necessary to validate received information. The findings from this study may assist in the development of formal processes of information evaluation to minimize the negative implications resulting from the use of inaccurate information. Future researchers may further explore the implications related to the assessment of value resulting from the use of information and the related consequences to the organization relying on accurate information.
Dedication: 
This dissertation is dedicated to my late grandparents, Elmer and Koula, who taught me the value of education and hard work and provided every opportunity for me to be the person I am. I dedicate this dissertation to my mother, Carla, who always finds the best in me and encourages me to follow my passion, and to my beautiful wife, Amanda, for being the pillar of support in everything I do. To my children, Emma and Olivia, I hope this accomplishment will be an inspiration for you to reach for your dreams and succeed no matter how long or difficult the journey may seem. Without the support from my family, this endeavor and countless others would not have been possible.
Acknowledgements: 
I would like to acknowledge all of the individuals that have helped me in the completion of this project. My family, foremost, I want to thank you for the support you have provided during the long hours it took to complete this project. Thank you for believing in me and eliminating my trepidation during my periods of doubt. A special thank you to Dr. Baugh who has shared his wisdom and has provided the necessary guidance to realize the potential of this project. To my committee, Dr. Ness and Dr. Mohan, thank you for sharing your expertise throughout this project. I am very fortunate to have worked with such great scholars; your feedback and expertise was pivotal to this project. I would like to acknowledge all of my University of Phoenix professors, peers, and friends for helping me through each phase of this journey. Lastly, I extend a final thank you to my professional colleagues for sharing their experiences at various phases of this project.