Secure Sharing of Geospatial Wildlife Data

Remo Manuel Frey, Thomas Hardjono, Christian Smith, Keeley Erhardt, Alex 'Sandy' Pentland. 2017. Secure Sharing of Geospatial Wildlife Data. 4th International ACM SIGMOD Workshop on Managing and Mining Enriched Geo-Spatial Data (GeoRich’17), Chicago, IL, USA


Modern tracking technologies enables new ways for data mining in the wild. It allows wildlife monitoring centers to permanently collect geospatial data in a non-intrusive manner in real-time and at low cost. Unfortunately, wildlife data is exposed to crime and there is already a first reported case of ‘cyber-poaching’. Based on stolen geospatial data, poachers can easily track and kill animals. As a result, cautious monitoring centers limited data access for research and public use. This means that the data cannot fully exploit its potential. We propose a novel solution to overcome the security problem. It allows monitoring centers to securely answer questions from the research community and to provide aggregated data to the public while the raw data is protected against unauthorized third parties. This data service can also be monetized. Several new applications are conceivable, such as a mobile app for preventing conflicts between human and wildlife or for engaging people in wildlife donation. Besides presenting the solution and potential use cases, the intention of present article is to start a discussion about the need for data protection and privacy in the animal world.

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