PROJECT OF THE WEEK - PROTECTIVE - Scalable Oblivious Data Analytics (SODA)

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Data is a very valuable asset in the world today. Big data drives big benefits by analyzing data to drive knowledge and add value creation across society. The challenges to privacy arise as more and more data is being generated to unlock the potential beyond each data.

As a Horizon2020 project, the main objective of the Scalable Oblivious Data Analytics (SODA) project is to develop methods for privacy-preserving Big Data analytics that are able to deal with the large-scale processing of personal data. 

SODA enables practical privacy-preserving analytics on Big Data using Multi-Party Computation (MPC) technology. Going beyond technology, our research and innovation action focuses on technology, users and legal aspects. Demonstrator use cases, e.g. hospitals jointly learning a predictive analytics model, validate the innovations. 

Regarding technology, SODA achieved significant advances to core MPC protocols and MPC-based machine learning algorithms. This also includes adoption in MPC frameworks and demonstrators. User study research provides insights into barriers and opportunities in setting up MPC systems. In-depth legal analysis positions MPC in international and European data protection and privacy laws.

But how can SODA project make a difference to potential end-users? 

SODA enables end-users to enjoy the benefits of data analytics while respecting their privacy at the same time. Today, privacy and other interests block data sharing and analytics, e.g. in the medical domain to improve treatment. SODA overcomes this privacy-utility tradeoff by bringing Multi-Party Computation (MPC) closer to broad adoption. On one hand it advances the technology to enable meaningful analytics use cases. On the other hand, SODA explicitly addresses end-user barriers and opportunities. Particularly, it addresses patients and stakeholders in the health domain to match their needs and capabilities and to explain the technology and its impact on them.

Their goals and result to the future Horizon Europe

The SODA results provide a realistic view what is possible with Multi-Party Computation and what is needed towards broad adoption. Great progress is made inside and outside of SODA, but there are also major challenges ahead, and future investments are necessary to unlock the potential. For this purpose, SODA participates in discussions with stakeholders, other EU projects and forums like BDV and contributes to position papers.

To know more about our featured Project of the Week - SODA, visit their official website.