A Distributed K-Anonymity Protocol for Location Privacy

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Executive Summary

To benefit from a location-based service, a person must reveal her location to the service. However, knowing the person's location might allow the service to re-identify the person. Location privacy based on k-anonymity addresses this threat by cloaking the person's location such that there are at least k ??' 1 other people within the cloaked area and by revealing only the cloaked area to a location-based service. Previous research has explored two ways of cloaking: they have a central server that knows everybody's location determine the cloaked area. However, this server needs to be trusted by all users and is a single point of failure.

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