Location tells a story about us: who we are, what we like to do, and who we spend time with. Masking geographic data through small displacements of point data protects against identity exposure in our digital footprints. This piece illustrates a location privacy technique called Voronoi masking.
In Voronoi masking, a Voronoi tessellation is overlaid with a set of point data. Each point is snapped to the closest part of the closest edge of its respective polygon. In many cases, this results in points being snapped to each other, reducing the risk of re-identifying an individual. Arrows indicate the direction each point is displaced; ellipses indicate clusters of points. This technique results in strong measurements of spatial pattern preservation, valuable for researchers, as well as privacy protection, valuable for data subjects.