Mobile social software privacy

I wrote a piece for TheFeature.com about UC Berkeley Professor John Canny’s work on designing privacy systems for mobile social software (MoSoSo) networks.

Another method takes advantage of “the natural incentives that occur in peer communities, as manifest in things like Napster and Gnutella,” says Canny. “It does seem within a community you have a few altruistic people who will, for whatever reason, help the community by providing the service, and from a privacy perspective you can do a lot if you can identify some users who are willing to leave a machine online that provides some privacy protection. The rest of the people in the community can use that machine. They don’t have to trust the owner of the machine because the algorithm is set up so that the owner of that machine can’t get access to that machine anyway, but if they provide this service, they can protect their peers’ information from the service provider.”

Link