thinkspatial_logoOn Tuesday, November 14, 2017 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents

“LocBorg: Location Privacy while Preserving Online Persona”

Amr El Abbadi

Department of Computer Science
University of California, Santa Barbara

12:00 p.m. Tuesday, November 14, 2017 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map)


Thinkspatial Amr El Abbadi

Social media stream analysis can reveal the characteristics of users who engage with or post about different topics. Recent technologies show that it is possible to reveal sensitive attributes (e.g., location, gender, ethnicity, political views, etc.) of individuals by analyzing their social media streams. Although, the prediction of a user’s attributes can be used to enhance the user experience in social media, revealing some sensitive attributes like location could represent a threat to individuals. In this talk will explore our vision regarding the future of user privacy on social media. We advocate a cyborg, an artificial intelligent system, which helps social media users protect their privacy by obfuscating their location while maintaining their online persona.


Amr El Abbadi is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received his B. Eng. from Alexandria University, Egypt, and his Ph.D. from Cornell University. El Abbadi is an ACM Fellow, AAAS Fellow, and IEEE Fellow. He was Chair of the Computer Science Department at UCSB from 2007 to 2011. He has served as a journal editor for several database journals, including, The VLDB Journal, IEEE Transactions on Computers, and The Computer Journal. He has been Program Chair for multiple database and distributed systems conferences, most recently SIGSPATIAL GIS 2010, ACM Symposium on Cloud Computing (SoCC) 2011, COMAD (India) 2012, the first ACM Conference on Social Networks (COSN)2013 and The International Conference on Networked Systems (NETYS) in Morocco 2017. He currently serves on the executive committee of the IEEE Technical Committee on Data Engineering (TCDE) and was a board member of the VLDB Endowment from 2002 to 2008. In 2007, El Abbadi received the UCSB Senate Outstanding Mentorship Award for his excellence in mentoring graduate students. In 2013, his student, Sudipto Das received the SIGMOD Jim Gray Doctoral Dissertation Award. Most recently El Abbadi was the co‐recipient of the Test of Time Award at EDBT/ICDT 2015. He has published more than 300 articles in databases and distributed systems and has supervised more than 35 Ph.D. students.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Werner Kuhn ( to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

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