Approximate Information Flows (AIF)

Xiaodong Jiang, Jason I. Hong, and James A. Landay, apply different concepts from economics and information theory to model the exchange of information among the different actors (data owners, data collectors and data users) to minimize the asymmetry of information flow among them.

Approximate Information Flows Diagram

After identifying the main actors they propose the principle of minimum asymmetry:

 Principle of Minimum Asymmetry

A privacy-aware system should minimize the asymmetry of information between data owners and data collectors and data users, by:

  • Decreasing the flow of information from data owners to data collectors and users
  • Increasing the flow of information from data collectors and users back to data owners

To support this Principle of Minimum Asymmetry they design a space of Privacy solutions in Ubiquitous Computing


X. Jiang, J. I. Hong, and J. A. Landay, “Approximate information flows: Socially-based modeling of privacy in ubiquitous computing,”

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