Scalable and Privacy-Preserving Federated Principal Component Analysis


Principal component analysis (PCA) is an essential algorithm for dimensionality reduction in many data science domains. We address the problem of performing a federated PCA on private data distributed among multiple data providers while ensuring data confidentiality. Our solution, SF-PCA, is an end-to-end secure system that preserves the confidentiality of both the original data and all intermediate results in a passive-adversary model with up to all-but-one colluding parties. SF-PCA jointly leverages multiparty homomorphic encryption, interactive protocols, and edge computing to efficiently interleave computations on local cleartext data with operations on collectively encrypted data. SF-PCA obtains results as accurate as non-secure centralized solutions, independently of the data distribution among the parties. It scales linearly or better with the dataset dimensions and with the number of data providers. SF-PCA is more precise than existing approaches that approximate the solution by combining local analysis results, and between 3x and 250x faster than privacy-preserving alternatives based solely on secure multiparty computation or homomorphic encryption. Our work demonstrates the practical applicability of secure and federated PCA on private distributed datasets.

IEEE Symposium on Security & Privacy 2023
David Froelicher
David Froelicher
Postdoctoral researcher

My research interests include applied cryptography, distributed systems and genomic privacy.