Anonymized Histograms in Intermediate Privacy Models

Badih Ghazi · Pritish Kamath · Ravi Kumar · Pasin Manurangsi

Hall J #829

Keywords: [ differential privacy ] [ anonymized histograms ] [ shuffle DP ] [ pan privacy ]

Abstract: We study the problem of privately computing the $\mbox{\it anonymized histogram}$ (a.k.a. $\mbox{\it unattributed histogram}$), which is defined as the histogram without item labels. Previous works have provided algorithms with $\ell_1$- and $\ell_2^2$-errors of $O_\varepsilon(\sqrt{n})$ in the central model of differential privacy (DP).In this work, we provide an algorithm with a nearly matching error guarantee of $\widetilde{O}_\varepsilon(\sqrt{n})$ in the shuffle DP and pan-private models. Our algorithm is very simple: it just post-processes the discrete Laplace-noised histogram! Using this algorithm as a subroutine, we show applications in privately estimating symmetric properties of distributions such as entropy, support coverage, and support size.

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