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Department of Computer Science Seminar
2008 Series

Non-Exposure Location Anonymity and Services

Dr. Haibo Hu
Department of Computer Science
Hong Kong Baptist University

Date: November 17, 2008 (Monday)
Time: 3:30 - 4:30 pm
Venue: RRS905, Sir Run Run Shaw Building, Ho Sin Hang Campus

Location cloaking has been proposed and well studied to protect user privacy in location-based services. It blurs the accurate user location (i.e., a point with coordinates) and replaces it with a well-shaped cloaked region (usually a circle or a rectangle). However, to obtain such a cloaked region, all existing cloaking algorithms require to know the accurate locations (i.e., the coordinates) of all users, which is exactly what the users want to hide. In this talk, I will present a location cloaking algorithm without exposing the accurate user location. It is designed for k-anonymity and cloaking is performed based on the proximity information among mobile users, instead of directly on their coordinates. I will divide the problem into two subproblems — proximity minimum k-clustering and secure bounding, and present distributed algorithms for both of them. In the second part of this talk, I will extend the non-exposure paradigm to a special type of location-based services: service allocation query. In this query, there are a large number of service objects distributed in space, such as gas stations, restaurants, and taxis. Each object has a certain “service area” into which the space is partitioned. The service allocation query let the user know which service area he/she falls into and therefore which object serves him/her. I will introduce a secure distributed protocol for the user to request such service without exposing any location.

Dr. Haibo Hu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science, Hong Kong Baptist University. Prior to this, he held several research and teaching posts at HKUST and HKBU. He received his PhD degree in Computer Science from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in 2005. His research interests include mobile and wireless data management, location-based services, and privacy-aware computing. He has published 20 research papers in international conferences, journals and book chapters. He is also the recipient of many awards, including ACM Best PhD Paper Award and Microsoft Imagine Cup.

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Department of Computer Science, Hong Kong Baptist University
Hong Kong Baptist University