ASAP: Eliminating algorithm-based disclosure in privacy-preserving data publishing

Xin Jin, Nan Zhang, Gautam Das

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Numerous privacy-preserving data publishing algorithms were proposed to achieve privacy guarantees such as ℓdiversity. Many of them, however, were recently found to be vulnerable to algorithm-based disclosure - i.e., privacy leakage incurred by an adversary who is aware of the privacy-preserving algorithm being used. This paper describes generic techniques for correcting the design of existing privacy-preserving data publishing algorithms to eliminate algorithm-based disclosure. We first show that algorithm-based disclosure is more prevalent and serious than previously studied. Then, we strictly define Algorithm-SAfe Publishing (ASAP) to capture and eliminate threats from algorithm-based disclosure. To correct the problems of existing data publishing algorithms, we propose two generic tools to be integrated in their design: global look-ahead and local look-ahead. To enhance data utility, we propose another generic tool called stratified pick-up. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our tools by applying them to several popular ℓdiversity algorithms: Mondrian, Hilb, and MASK. We conduct extensive experiments to demonstrate the effectiveness of our tools in terms of data utility and efficiency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)859-880
Number of pages22
JournalInformation Systems
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Information Systems
  • Hardware and Architecture


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