Distributed Differentially Private Mutual Information Ranking and Its Applications

09/22/2020 ∙ by Ankit Srivastava, et al. ∙ 0

Computation of Mutual Information (MI) helps understand the amount of information shared between a pair of random variables. Automated feature selection techniques based on MI ranking are regularly used to extract information from sensitive datasets exceeding petabytes in size, over millions of features and classes. Series of one-vs-all MI computations can be cascaded to produce n-fold MI results, rapidly pinpointing informative relationships. This ability to quickly pinpoint the most informative relationships from datasets of billions of users creates privacy concerns. In this paper, we present Distributed Differentially Private Mutual Information (DDP-MI), a privacy-safe fast batch MI, across various scenarios such as feature selection, segmentation, ranking, and query expansion. This distributed implementation is protected with global model differential privacy to provide strong assurances against a wide range of privacy attacks. We also show that our DDP-MI can substantially improve the efficiency of MI calculations compared to standard implementations on a large-scale public dataset.

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