VAFL: a Method of Vertical Asynchronous Federated Learning

07/12/2020
by   Tianyi Chen, et al.
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Horizontal Federated learning (FL) handles multi-client data that share the same set of features, and vertical FL trains a better predictor that combine all the features from different clients. This paper targets solving vertical FL in an asynchronous fashion, and develops a simple FL method. The new method allows each client to run stochastic gradient algorithms without coordination with other clients, so it is suitable for intermittent connectivity of clients. This method further uses a new technique of perturbed local embedding to ensure data privacy and improve communication efficiency. Theoretically, we present the convergence rate and privacy level of our method for strongly convex, nonconvex and even nonsmooth objectives separately. Empirically, we apply our method to FL on various image and healthcare datasets. The results compare favorably to centralized and synchronous FL methods.

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