Series: Find, view, and link external contacts

Contact identification overview


The following permissions:

  • External Contacts > Conversation Associate
  • External Contacts > Contact > View
  • External Contacts > External Organization > View
Important: To build the interaction history for a contact and organization, remember to always link the contact that is associated with an interaction.

Identity resolution

With single customer view, when an interaction begins, Genesys Cloud automatically uses identity resolution to attempt to link the contact to an existing contact record.

Note: For open messaging interactions, Genesys Cloud does not currently automatically search for existing external contacts. You can manually search and link open messaging interactions to contacts.

Identity resolution makes single customer view happen with four types of contacts:

Contact type Description

If Genesys Cloud finds a single match, it auto-links the contact:

  • For email interactions, Genesys Cloud uses the email address.
  • For voice interactions, Genesys Cloud uses the phone number.
  • For web chat interactions, Genesys Cloud uses the email address, if supplied. If the email address is not available, Genesys Cloud uses the phone number. If either the email address or the phone number search results in a single match, Genesys Cloud auto-links the contact. If neither email address nor phone number is available, Genesys Cloud searches for the name entered. If that search results in a single match, Genesys Cloud shows the profile, and the agent can link it. For more information about configuring web chat fields, see the Developer Center.
  • For messaging interactions, Genesys Cloud uses the messaging ID. If Genesys Cloud cannot auto-link with the messaging ID, Genesys Cloud attempts to search for the contact name. If the search results in a single match, Genesys Cloud shows the profile, and the agent can link it.

If Genesys Cloud finds no matches, or if it finds more than one match, it uses cookie identifiers to create an ephemeral, or temporary, contact. An agent can create a new contact from the temporary contact or link a temporary contact to an existing external contact. Unlinked ephemeral contacts expire 60 days after their last interaction with your organization.


Sometimes, multiple contact records may represent a single contact. For example, a contact connects with your organization by email upon one occasion, and then the same person uses web messaging to contact your organization. Genesys Cloud allows an agent to merge the contact records. In this case, the previous contacts become aliases to the canonical contact.

Curated After an agent links a contact, Genesys Cloud saves it as a curated contact. Curated contacts are searchable.
Note: Ephemeral and identified contacts become curated contacts after an agent or API client/integration promotes the contact.

For more information and examples that show how single customer view impacts External Contacts, see Single customer view examples.

Contact identification and message channel identifiers

Genesys Cloud captures message channel identifiers for messaging interactions.

  • If you unlink a contact, Genesys Cloud doesn’t remove the message channel identifier.
  • If an existing external contact modifies part of their social channel information and starts a new message interaction, Genesys Cloud prompts the agent to update the external contact record with the new information.

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