SwissRe IBM GDI Webinar

Anonymisation and Privacy Protection in the age of Mass Data Collection

In the first session in our webinar series, jointly organized by Swiss Re Institute, IBM Research, and Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute, two experts will discuss the limits of data anonymisation and de-identification to protect the privacy of individuals.

We live in a time when information about most of our movements and actions is collected and stored in real time. The availability of large-scale behavioral data dramatically increases our capacity to understand and potentially affect the behavior of individuals and collectives.

The use of this data, however, raises legitimate privacy concerns. Anonymisation is meant to address these concerns: allowing data to be fully used while preserving individuals' privacy. Two experts will first discuss how traditional data protection mechanisms fail to protect people's privacy in the age of big data. More specifically, they will show how the mere absence of obvious identifiers such as name or phone number or the addition of noise are not enough to prevent re-identification. Second, they will describe what they see as a necessary evolution of the notion of data anonymisation towards an anonymous use of data. Finally, they will by discussing some of the modern privacy engineering techniques currently developed to allow large-scale behavioral data to be used while giving individual strong privacy guarantees.

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