Industry Insights

In our blog we provide you with industry insights on privacy, anonymization, analytics and of course information about our solution Aircloak Insights.

Category: General

August 25, 2020 by Paul Francis

Diffix Cedar bounty prize awarded to UPenn students

I would like to congratulate Matthew Joseph, Zachary Schutzman, and Travis Dick, of the University of Pennsylvania, for their brilliant de-anonymization attack on Diffix Cedar as part of the MPI-SWS Diffix bounty program. For their effort, the UPenn team received $5150 out of a possible $10000 payout. The attack was demonstrated in May 2020 on the version Diffix Cedar. The … read more

August 24, 2020 by Paul Francis

The Significance of a Diffix Bounty Payment and Vulnerability Severity Score

  From time to time a participant in a Diffix bounty program runs a successful attack and receives a payment. One might take this to mean that individuals in the databases of organizations that use Aircloak data anonymization were at serious risk. This is not necessarily the case, and so far has never been the case. The Diffix bounty program … read more

August 11, 2020 by Paul Francis

Diffix and the Fundamental Law of Information Recovery

A frequent assumption among privacy professionals is that any data anonymization system that allows unlimited queries leads to serious privacy loss. This article debunks that assumption with a simple example derived from the seminal 2003 paper of Dinur and Nissim. We give examples of how Diffix achieves strong anonymity and good utility with unlimited queries (and no budget), and suggest … read more

June 24, 2020 by Paul Francis

The five private eyes, Part 1: The surprising strength of de-identified data

  Try googling for the phrase “anonymization is impossible”. You’ll get plenty of hits. The idea that anonymization is impossible, or at least very very hard, is widespread. Another widely held belief is that Differential Privacy, with its mathematical guarantee of privacy, is the only way to reliably anonymize data. In stark contrast to these beliefs is the simple fact … read more

June 9, 2020 by Paul Francis

Re-opening Society and the Economy — the Right Way

A critical challenge for governments in the coming months is to re-open the economy without overwhelming the health system. To do this, decision makers across the globe argue that they need access to geo-location and health symptoms data. This allows them to understand where crowding is taking place, how this crowding relates to Covid-19 symptoms, and how specific social distancing … read more

November 26, 2019 by Nicolas Sartor

7 Questions on Privacy and Data Anonymization [Survey Results]

Interestingly enough, despite being a heavily discussed topic, surveys on privacy and data anonymization are still pretty rare. In September of this year, we were invited to participate at an event from Digitalstrategie.NRW (an initiative on digitization, coined by the Ministry of Economic Affairs from North Rhine-Westphalia) with a talk on data anonymization. What made this event unique is that … read more

July 29, 2019 by Nicolas Sartor

9 Data Anonymization Use Cases You Need To Know Of

While theoretical examples and academic approaches to data anonymization are plentiful, it is hard to find information on actual current use cases. To fill this gap, we are constantly collecting the best examples and present these here. At the end of this article we also name tools and vendors that claim to solve some of the respective use cases. Note … read more