The Alexandra Institute // Right Now // News // 2015 // Secure your data and protect other people’s data too

Secure your data and protect other people’s data too



Secure your data and protect other people’s data too

Security and privacy are in focus the more we use data – and the more data we use. According to Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen, security expert in the Alexandra Institute’s Security Lab, the increased focus on big data security is not just a challenge. On the contrary: It may open up new business opportunities. 

– EU’s proposed General Data Protection Regulation will impose stricter requirements on the handling and exchange of personal information. This is likely to have a big impact and may prevent the development of certain big data solutions.

– The increased focus on big data security and privacy enables us to act proactively and develop solutions that meet the regulation.

– Several organisations refrain from developing solutions for security concerns, but there is huge business potential in state-of-the-art security solutions.

The Alexandra Institute’s Security Lab helps companies understand the security issues of specific contexts. We also advise companies on how to design and develop solutions that both meet the needs of businesses and comply with data protection regulation.

Secure data exchange between companies 

There are two interesting aspects when we talk about big data and security. One involves citizens who are exposed to advertisements based on all kinds of data sets. The other involves companies who want to exchange data – for example in connection with Supply Chain Management.

– Secure Multiparty Computation (SMC) is an efficient technology for secure data exchange. In the research project COBE (Confidential Benchmarking), we have taken part in developing an SMC-based solution that enables integration of confidential data, which would otherwise be problematic seen from a security perspective, says Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen.

SMC allows a number of servers to jointly compute any function without learning the inputs to the function. Using the right cryptographic tools, the servers can work together and compute the result, which will never be compromised.

Secure authentication and privacy protection

Another example is the technology Attribute-Based Credentials (ABC), which supports both secure authentication and privacy protection, for example in connection with electronic ID cards, which become more and more common. The Alexandra Institute has been involved in the EU research project ABC4Trust that develops privacy solutions for this type of systems.

– The objective was to establish an overall architecture and a common platform for existing ABC systems. The solution reduces the amount of information you have to give about yourself, and you do not reveal any information unless you want to. This provides an extra level of quality and service to the users and reduces the risk of data being compromised, says Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen and adds:

– SMC and ABC are only two examples of technologies that have a potential within security and privacy in a big data context. 

Profilbillede af Gert Læssøe Mikkelsen
Head of Security Lab, PhD
+45 24 26 99 11
Åbogade 34, 8200 Aarhus N
Hopper bygningen, 2. etage room 226