Distribution-based microdata anonymization

Nick Koudas, Ting Yu, Divesh Srivastava, Qing Zhang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Citations (Scopus)


Before sharing to support ad hoc aggregate analyses, microdata often need to be anonymized to protect the privacy of individuals. A variety of privacy models have been proposed for microdata anonymization. Many of these models (e.g., t -closeness) essentially require that, after anonymization, groups of sensitive attribute values follow specified distributions. To support such models, in this paper we study the problem of transforming a group of sensitive attribute values to follow a certain target distribution with minimal data distortion. Specifically, we develop and evaluate a novel methodology that combines the use of sensitive attribute permutation and generalization with the addition of fake sensitive attribute values to achieve this transformation. We identify metrics related to accuracy of aggregate query answers over the transformed data, and develop efficient anonymization algorithms to optimize these accuracy metrics. Using a variety of data sets, we experimentally demonstrate the effectiveness of our techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the VLDB Endowment
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Computer Science(all)

Cite this

Koudas, N., Yu, T., Srivastava, D., & Zhang, Q. (2009). Distribution-based microdata anonymization. In Proceedings of the VLDB Endowment (1 ed., Vol. 2, pp. 958-969)