Learn about the graph technology powering Universal Onboarding

Universal Onboarding harnesses ID graph technology for efficient, cost-effective data onboarding across multiple providers.


Universal Onboarding leverages an identity graph for efficiently onboarding data across multiple providers.

The graph stores identity observations so that unique linkages from multiple providers can be traversed for efficient, cost-effective onboarding.

The combined linkages from individual providers are available for instant match forecasting and purchase in Universal Onboarding.

Key concepts

Identifier (ID)

An identifier is a string representing a device, person, or household.


Four IDs: a hashed email (HEM), a mobile ad ID (MAID), a cookie, and a Placekey

See also: What types of IDs are available in Universal Onboarding? 


A linkage is a connection between two IDs given by a provider, e.g. 1 Placekey<>1 SHA-256 hashed email. A linkage is also known as an edge or pair.


A linkage connecting two IDs: a HEM and a MAID.

Connected component

A connected component is the collection of all IDs and linkages representing a device, person, or household. The smallest connected component consists of two IDs (joined in one linkage).


Common examples of connected components:

cc_1   cc_2   cc_3


A path is the most cost-efficient collection of linkages needed to move from a starting ID to an addressable ID inside a connected component. Depending on the destination, the addressable IDs may include MAIDs or cookies. The shortest possible path is one linkage.


A path from a HEM to a MAID


A path from a HEM to a cookie to a HEM to a cookie


A path from a Placekey to a HEM to a MAID


A path from a Placekey to a HEM to a cookie


In this example of onboarding from a SHA-256 email to an ADID, two possible paths exist: the blue path consisting of one linkage for $0.005, or the pink path consisting of three linkages for a total of $0.0006. Universal Onboarding would use the pink linkages to onboard the SHA-256 email to an ADID at the lowest cost.

Unlike other onboarding solutions in the market, in Universal Onboarding, a customer pays only for matches.

The value of the Universal Onboarding graph

The technology behind Universal Onboarding makes it possible for buyers to onboard efficiently across multiple providers and for identity data providers to boost their sales.


Provider A has a linkage linking a Placekey to a SHA-256 hashed email.

Provider B has a linkage linking the SHA-256 hashed email to a MAID.

In this scenario, a buyer would not be able to onboard a record from a starting ID (Placekey) to an addressable ID (MAID), but combining their linkages into one path completes the buyer's onboarding journey and allows both linkages to be purchased.