One of the basic motivations for solving DCOPs is maintaining agents' privacy. Thus, researchers have evaluated the privacy loss of DCOP algorithms and defined corresponding notions of privacy preservation for secured DCOP algorithms. However, no secured protocol was proposed for Max-Sum, which is among the most studied DCOP algorithms. As part of the ongoing effort of designing secure DCOP algorithms, we propose P-Max-Sum, the first private algorithm that is based on Max-Sum. The proposed algorithm has multiple agents preforming the role of each node in the factor graph, on which the Max-Sum algorithm operates. P-Max-Sum preserves three types of privacy: topology privacy, constraint privacy, and assignment/decision privacy. By allowing a single call to a trusted coordinator, P-Max-Sum also preserves agent privacy. The two main cryptographic means that enable this privacy preservation are secret sharing and homomorphic encryption. In addition, we design privacy-preserving implementations of four variants of Max-Sum. We conclude by analyzing the price of privacy in terns of runtime overhead, both theoretically and by extensive experimentation.
Machine Learning (ML) is widely used for predictive tasks in a number of critical applications. Recently, collaborative or federated learning is a new paradigm that enables multiple parties to jointly learn ML models on their combined datasets. Yet, in most application domains, such as healthcare and security analytics, privacy risks limit entities to individually learning local models over the sensitive datasets they own. In this work, we present the first formal study for privacy-preserving collaborative hierarchical clustering, overall featuring scalable cryptographic protocols that allow two parties to privately compute joint clusters on their combined sensitive datasets. First, we provide a formal definition that balances accuracy and privacy, and we present a provably secure protocol along with an optimized version for single linkage clustering. Second, we explore the integration of our protocol with existing approximation algorithms for hierarchical clustering, resulting in a protocol that can efficiently scale to very large datasets. Finally, we provide a prototype implementation and experimentally evaluate the feasibility and efficiency of our approach on synthetic and real datasets, with encouraging results. For example, for a dataset of one million records and 10 dimensions, our optimized privacy-preserving approximation protocol requires 35 seconds for end-to-end execution, just 896KB of communication, and achieves 97.09% accuracy.
Distributed constraint optimization problems enable the representation of many combinatorial problems that are distributed by nature. An important motivation for such problems is to preserve the privacy of the participating agents during the solving process. The present paper introduces a novel privacy-preserving branch and bound algorithm for this purpose. The proposed algorithm, P-SyncBB, preserves constraint, topology and decision privacy. The algorithm requires secure solutions to several multi-party computation problems. Consequently, appropriate novel secure protocols are devised and analyzed. An extensive experimental evaluation on different benchmarks, problem sizes, and constraint densities shows that P-SyncBB exhibits superior performance to other privacy-preserving complete DCOP algorithms.
We propose the first privacy-preserving approach to address the privacy issues that arise in multi-agent planning problems modeled as a Dec-POMDP. Our solution is a distributed message-passing algorithm based on trials, where the agents' policies are optimized using the cross-entropy method. In our algorithm, the agents' private information is protected using a public-key homomorphic cryptosystem. We prove the correctness of our algorithm and analyze its complexity in terms of message passing and encryption/decryption operations. Furthermore, we analyze several privacy aspects of our algorithm and show that it can preserve the agent privacy of non-neighbors, model privacy, and decision privacy. Our experimental results on several common Dec-POMDP benchmark problems confirm the effectiveness of our approach.
AI algorithms, and machine learning (ML) techniques in particular, are increasingly important to individuals' lives, but have caused a range of privacy concerns addressed by, e.g., the European GDPR. Using cryptographic techniques, it is possible to perform inference tasks remotely on sensitive client data in a privacy-preserving way: the server learns nothing about the input data and the model predictions, while the client learns nothing about the ML model (which is often considered intellectual property and might contain traces of sensitive data). While such privacy-preserving solutions are relatively efficient, they are mostly targeted at neural networks, can degrade the predictive accuracy, and usually reveal the network's topology. Furthermore, existing solutions are not readily accessible to ML experts, as prototype implementations are not well-integrated into ML frameworks and require extensive cryptographic knowledge. In this paper, we present CryptoSPN, a framework for privacy-preserving inference of sum-product networks (SPNs). SPNs are a tractable probabilistic graphical model that allows a range of exact inference queries in linear time. Specifically, we show how to efficiently perform SPN inference via secure multi-party computation (SMPC) without accuracy degradation while hiding sensitive client and training information with provable security guarantees. Next to foundations, CryptoSPN encompasses tools to easily transform existing SPNs into privacy-preserving executables. Our empirical results demonstrate that CryptoSPN achieves highly efficient and accurate inference in the order of seconds for medium-sized SPNs.