[talks] Wednesday, October 7th-Colloquium

Michele J. Brown mjbrown at CS.Princeton.EDU
Thu Oct 1 12:58:02 EDT 2009

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Title: On the Internet Someone Knows You Are a Dog
Balachander Krishnamurthy, AT&T Labs - Research

  We have been examining the leakage of privacy on the Internet: how 
information related to individual users is aggregated as they browse 
seemingly unrelated Web sites. Thousands of Web sites across numerous 
categories, countries, and languages are studied to generate a "privacy 
footprint". I report on a longitudal study consisting of multiple 
snapshots of examination of such diffusion over five years. I'll talk 
about the technical ways by which third-party aggregators acquire data, 
the depth of user-related information acquired, the techniques for 
protecting privacy diffusion and limitations of such techniques. Such 
increasing aggregation of user-related data is carried out by a steadily 
decreasing number of entities: a handful are able to track users' 
movement across almost all of the popular web sites. Virtually all the 
protection techniques have significant limitations highlighting the 
seriousness of the problem and the need for alternate solutions.
I will also talk about a recent discovery of large-scale leakage of 
personally identifiable information (PII) via Online Social Networks 
(OSN). Third-parties can link PII with user actions both within OSN 
sites and elsewhere on non-OSN sites.

4:30 PM
Computer Science Small Auditorium (Room 105)
Host: Jennifer Rexford 


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