Add-on for Outlook updates contact info

PC software and peripherals maker Corex Technologies introduces software to automatically update contacts listed in Microsoft's personal information management program.

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PC software and peripherals maker Corex Technologies announced a new service Monday that automatically updates contact information stored in Microsoft's Outlook software.

AccuCard consists of software that ties in with Outlook, the most common personal information management (PIM) program used to keep track of business contacts. AccuCard reads all contact information and automatically sends messages to contacts once every three months asking that they update or confirm contact information. AccuCard sorts through the replies and integrates them with the subscriber's Outlook contacts list.

Information from the replies is also stored in a secure database maintained by Corex and used to automatically update information for any other subscriber who lists that person as a contact.

"We did a lot of study for how the process needed to work to be perceived as friendly by the people getting the update requests," said Tom Stearns, director of marketing for Corex. "The person that receives the update request shouldn't perceive it as a burden. So we implemented a one e-mail system: If you update for me, you update for everyone else, and you don't hear from us again for 90 days."

Corex is best known for its CardScan line of scanners, which read information from paper business cards and convert it to contact entries for Outlook and other PIM applications. A service similar to AccuCard has been included with CardScan products, but Corex thinks there's a market for a standalone version, especially for companies looking to automate the way they handle customer data, said Stearns. "There's a huge challenge there for keeping up-to-date for companies that use" customer relationship management (CRM) systems, he said.

A free trial version of AccuCard is available for download from Corex. The full product costs $50 per year.

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