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RE: privacy in OWL

From: Jim Hendler <hendler@cs.umd.edu>
Date: Tue, 6 May 2003 12:52:41 -0400
Message-Id: <p05200f1dbadd98b841bf@[]>
To: "Bernard Vatant" <bernard.vatant@mondeca.com>, "Rigo Wenning" <rigo@w3.org>, <public-webont-comments@w3.org>
Cc: Benoit Carcenac <benoit.carcenac@mondeca.com>

Rigo and Bernard - thanks for your comments.  We will get back to you 
with responses
  -Jim Hendler

At 17:33 +0200 5/6/03, Bernard Vatant wrote:
>Well, I was just about to send a comment along the same general lines, the
>notion of "rights" in OWL. In real-world applications, one will need the
>built-in ability to manage rights of access and edition on the information,
>based on users profiles, definition of workspaces, and the like.
>Of course the rights on any given OWL class or individual can be defined by
>a specific property in a specific ontology, but it would maybe good to have
>a generic built-in property "owl:Rights" used to assert that information on
>such class of objects will be available only to such class of users.
>This is something that can be somehow achieved in Topic Maps software by an
>ad hoc interpretation of "scope" elements - although such an interpretation
>of scope is left to the application.
>Bernard Vatant
>Senior Consultant
>Knowledge Engineering
>Mondeca - www.mondeca.com
>>  -----Message d'origine-----
>>  De : public-webont-comments-request@w3.org
>>  [mailto:public-webont-comments-request@w3.org]De la part de Rigo Wenning
>>  Envoye : mardi 6 mai 2003 15:45
>>  A : Dan Connolly
>>  Cc : t-and-s@w3.org; public-webont-comments@w3.org
>>  Objet : Re: privacy in OWL
>>  On Thu, May 01, 2003 at 09:53:12AM -0500, Dan Connolly wrote:
>>  > If you have any comments on it, please send them
>>  > to public-webont-comments@w3.org
>>  Comment on Privacy in Web-ont
>>  It is honorable, that the Webont Working Group thought about
>>  including something about Privacy into their guide.
>>  <for the impatient>
>>  As usual in privacy, nearly everybody is aware of potential
>>  privacy issues or has some kind of bad conciousness about it.
>>  In the absence of real solutions, this bad consciousness is
>>  discharged by some rather general privacy warning. The result is
>>  that implementers of OWL will share bad consciousness, but lack a
>>  solution.
>>  The good news is, that there might be some remedy. The remedy
>>  lies in OWL itself, as the approach is mainly based on metadata.
>>  The P3P Specification WG has thought about integrating the P3P
>>  semantics into the Semantic Web. For this reason -in cooperation
>>  with the RDF IG- a RDF-Schema representing P3P was developed[1]. It
>>  might be good to reference this schema and verify, whether it is
>>  importable into OWL (or what is missing/has to be changed,
>>  to make it importable). This way, OWL-Ontologies treating persons
>>  would be able to also include those persons' preferences. This
>>  way, the inference engine can respect those preferences (or
>>  policies attached to an individual).
>>  In the future, we might want to use the preference-language
>>  APPEL[2] but I'm actually not able to determine if it would
>>  better fit into OWL.
>>  </for the impatient>
>>  I would suggest the following text. You can still change it as
>>  you like:
>>  OWL's ability to express ontological information about
>>  individuals -even appearing in multiple documents-, it's
>>  support for linking of data about individuals from diverse
>>  sources in a principled way may raise privacy issues.
>>  Privacy, by it's definition, protects individuals. Only if
>>  dealing with natural persons, one must be aware of the privacy
>>  implications. Goal is to protect against the disclosure of
>>  sensitive personal data but also against the creation of profiles
>>  making the individual and it's personality completly transparent
>>  to others. If we talk about privacy, we want to the opaqueness of
>>  someones personality and intimacy to the outside world. This can
>>  be overturned by the individual's will to disclose information.
>>  As a consequence, there is a need for the individuals kept in an
>>  ontology to be able to express their preferences. This can be
>>  done using the RDF-syntax for P3P [link] or APPEL [link].
>>  In particular, the ability to express equivalences using
>>  owl:sameIndividualAs can be used to state that seemingly
>>  different individuals are actually the same.
>>  Owl:InverseFunctionalProperty can also be used to link
>>  individuals together. For example, if a property such as
>>  "SocialSecurityNumber" is an owl:InverseFunctionalProperty, then
>>  two separate individuals could be inferred to be identical based
>>  on having the same value of that property. When individuals are
>>  determined to be the same by such means, information about them
>>  from different sources can be merged. This aggregation can be
>>  used to determine facts that are not directly represented in any
>>  one source.
>>  The ability of the Semantic Web to link information from multiple
>>  sources is a desirable and powerful feature that can be used in
>>  many applications. However, the capability to merge data from
>>  multiple sources, combined with the inferential power of OWL,
>>  does have potential for abuse. Users of OWL should be alert to
>>  the potential privacy implications.
>>    1. http://www.w3.org/TR/p3p-rdfschema/
>>    2. http://www.w3.org/TR/P3P-preferences/
>>  Best,
>>  --
>>  Rigo Wenning            W3C/ERCIM
>>  Policy Analyst          Privacy Activity Lead
>>  mail:rigo@w3.org        2004, Routes des Lucioles
>>  http://www.w3.org/      F-06902 Sophia Antipolis

Professor James Hendler				  hendler@cs.umd.edu
Director, Semantic Web and Agent Technologies	  301-405-2696
Maryland Information and Network Dynamics Lab.	  301-405-6707 (Fax)
Univ of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742	  240-731-3822 (Cell)
Received on Tuesday, 6 May 2003 12:52:51 UTC

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