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Analytics Company Claiming To be Able to show company visiting

10:47 am on Sep 23, 2013 (gmt 0)

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On Friday I was given a sales demonstration by a web analytics company who specialise in showing you the names of companies visiting your website.

My understanding is that you can do a reverse lookup on an IP address, but in most cases this will only resolve back to the ISP of the company, and not reveal the name of the actual company. They seem to be claiming that they have a database that maps IP addresses to actual company names, but I cannot see how they would go about creating such a thing.

I am a little concerned on just how reliable their data is - does anyone have any experience with this kind of analytics?
4:00 pm on Sept 23, 2013 (gmt 0)

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in most cases this will only resolve back to the ISP of the company

Even the free lookup will very often show the exact name attached to your particular /29 sliver. Only the tiniest companies go straight to a commercial ISP. If it's an academic range, it always resolves to the name of the school; there's no other ISP involved. So why wouldn't an analytics program be able to give the same information?

The question is whether they're doing dynamic lookups-- not likely-- or using a database, and then how often their database is updated.