On anonymizing query logs via token-based hashing

Ravi Kumar, Jasmine Novak, Bo Pang, Andrew Tomkins
2007 Proceedings of the 16th international conference on World Wide Web - WWW '07  
In this paper we study the privacy preservation properties of a specific technique for query log anonymization: tokenbased hashing. In this approach, each query is tokenized, and then a secure hash function is applied to each token. We show that statistical techniques may be applied to partially compromise the anonymization. We then analyze the specific risks that arise from these partial compromises, focused on revelation of identity from unambiguous names, addresses, and so forth, and the
more » ... lation of facts associated with an identity that are deemed to be highly sensitive. Our goal in this work is twofold: to show that token-based hashing is unsuitable for anonymization, and to present a concrete analysis of specific techniques that may be effective in breaching privacy, against which other anonymization schemes should be measured.
doi:10.1145/1242572.1242657 dblp:conf/www/KumarNPT07 fatcat:4qfaggyu3zc3jd5qurzfwpcqqy