Professor Sweeney speaking about social security numbers
Latanya Arvette Sweeney is a Professor of Government and Technology in Residence at Harvard University and the Director of the Data Privacy Lab in the Institute of Quantitative Social Science (IQSS) at Harvard. She served as the Chief Technologist of the Federal Trade Commission, a position she has held from January 2014 until December 2014. She has made several contributions to privacy technology. Her best known academic work is on the theory of k-anonymity and she is credited with the observation that "87% of the U.S. population is uniquely identified by date of birth, gender, postal code."
Sweeney develops technology to assess and solve societal problems and teaches others how to use the same technology. She has made several discoveries related to identifiability and privacy technologies. Her work has received awards from numerous organizations, including the American Psychiatric Association, the American Medical Informatics Association, and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Her work was praised in the TAPAC Report that reviewed the Total Information Awareness Project of DARPA. She has testified before the Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee of the Department of Homeland Security and the European Union Commission. Sweeney was a Distinguished Career Professor of Computer Science, Technology and Policy in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. In 2001, she received her PhD in computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she became the first African American woman to earn a PhD in computer science from that school. Her undergraduate degree in computer science was completed at Harvard University.
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- "Hello world! | Federal Trade Commission". www.ftc.gov. Retrieved 2016-03-22.
- L. Sweeney. "Simple Demographics Often Identify People Uniquely (Data Privacy Working Paper 3) Pittsburgh 2000." (PDF). Carnegie Mellon University. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
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- Arwa Mahdawi (5 February 2013). "Can Googling be racist?". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
- "Latanya Sweeney". Computer Scientists of the African Diaspora. Dr. Scott Williams, Professor of Mathematics State University of New York at Buffalo. Retrieved 20 January 2014.