k-Anonymity for Location Privacy, AT&T targets K-12

All Points pointed out an interesting new development that might help us take control over our privacy: k-Anonymity.

I can’t find details on this technology, but am glad to see it being discussed. It is important. The abstract here mentions the “location protection broker”. This sounds a bit like the Identity Oracle proposed here. With a name like CliqueCloak it sure seems like I’d be able to track the paper down with Google. Apparently the authors have done a good job at cloaking their intellectual property though. The physorg article doesn’t mention the role of government, and has no mention of location protector brokers. I wonder if the paper outlines the role played by the government in regulating location protection brokers. Anyone got a link to more details on this paper?

think of the children
Don’t worry, AT&T is thinking of the children.

Google, AT&T and others are rapidly deploying new LBS infrastructure with apparently little regard to location privacy issues. We in the geospatial community really need to be on top of this issue. I anticipate a school campus incident that “could have been avoided” using something similar to what AT&T announced today. See press release : AT&T Offers Network Industry-First RFID and GPS-Based Solutions for K – 12 Education Segment. This would not be good for personal freedom.

The public could just as easily over-react in the opposite direction. Suppose, for example, what might happen if Google was found archiving our every spatial move. The public would likely favor a move to ban tracking altogether. This would not be good for the LBS industry.

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