We studied Diffix, a system developed and commercialized by Aircloak to anonymise data by adding noise to SQL queries sent by analysts. In a manuscript we just published on arXiv, we show that Diffix is vulnerable to a noise-exploitation attack. In short, our attack uses the noise added by Diffix to infer people’s private information with high accuracy. We share Diffix’s creators opinion that it is time to take a fresh look at building practical anonymization systems.
When the signal is in the noise: Exploiting Aircloak's Diffix anonymization mechanism
Andrea Gadotti, Florimond Houssiau, Luc Rocher and Yves-Alexandre de Montjoye