Privacy-By-Decoy: Protecting Location Privacy against Collusion and Deanonymization in Vehicular Location Based Services

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

IEEE Intelligent Vehicles Symposium


Wireless networks which would connect vehicles via the Internet to a location based service, LBS, also would expose vehicles to online surveillance. In circumstances when spatial cloaking is not effective, such as when continuous precise location is required, LBSs may be designed so that users relay dummy queries through other vehicles to camouflage true locations. This paper introduces PARROTS, Position Altered Requests Relayed Over Time and Space, a privacy protocol which protects LBS users' location information from LBS administrators even (1) when the LBS requires continuous precise location data in a vehicular ad hoc network, (2) when LBS administrators collude with administrators of vehicular wireless access points (a.k.a. roadside units, or RSUs), and (3) when precise location data might be deanonymized using map databases linking vehicle positions with vehicle owners' home/work addresses and geographic coordinates. Defense against deanonymization requires concealment of endpoints, the effectiveness of which depends on the density of LBS users and the endpoint protection zone size. Simulations using realistic vehicle traffic mobility models varying endpoint protection zone sizes measure improvements in privacy protection.