Propensity Score Based Conditional Group Swapping for Disclosure Limitation of Strata-Defining Variables

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of PSD 2016: Privacy in Statistical Databases






In this paper we propose a method for statistical disclosure limitation of categorical variables that we call Conditional Group Swapping. This approach is suitable for design and strata-defining variables, the cross-classification of which leads to the formation of important groups or subpopulations. These groups are considered important because from the point of view of data analysis it is desirable to preserve analytical characteristics within them. In general data swapping can be quite distorting [13, 16, 20], especially for the relationships between the variables not only within the subpopulations but for the overall data. To reduce the damage incurred by swapping, we propose to choose the records for swapping using conditional probabilities which depend on the characteristics of the exchanged records. In particular, our approach exploits the results of propensity scores methodology for the computation of swapping probabilities. The experimental results presented in the paper show good utility properties of the method.