kACTUS 2: Privacy Preserving in Classification Tasks Using k-Anonymity

  • Slava Kisilevich
  • Yuval Elovici
  • Bracha Shapira
  • Lior Rokach
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5661)


k-anonymity is the method used for masking sensitive data which successfully solves the problem of re-linking of data with an external source and makes it difficult to re-identify the individual. Thus k-anonymity works on a set of quasi-identifiers (public sensitive attributes), whose possible availability and linking is anticipated from external dataset, and demands that the released dataset will contain at least k records for every possible quasi-identifier value. Another aspect of k is its capability of maintaining the truthfulness of the released data (unlike other existing methods). This is achieved by generalization, a primary technique in k-anonymity. Generalization consists of generalizing attribute values and substituting them with semantically consistent but less precise values. When the substituted value doesn’t preserve semantic validity the technique is called suppression which is a private case of generalization. We present a hybrid approach called compensation which is based on suppression and swapping for achieving privacy. Since swapping decreases the truthfulness of attribute values there is a tradeoff between level of swapping (information truthfulness) and suppression (information loss) incorporated in our algorithm.

We use k-anonymity to explore the issue of anonymity preservation. Since we do not use generalization, we do not need a priori knowledge of attribute semantics. We investigate data anonymization in the context of classification and use tree properties to satisfy k-anonymization. Our work improves previous approaches by increasing classification accuracy.


anonymity privacy preserving generalization suppression data mining 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Slava Kisilevich
    • 1
  • Yuval Elovici
    • 2
  • Bracha Shapira
    • 2
  • Lior Rokach
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer and Information ScienceKonstanz UniversityKonstanzGermany
  2. 2.Department of Information System Engineering and Deutsche Telekom Laboratories at Ben-Gurion UniversityBen Gurion UniversityBe’er ShevaIsrael

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