Data Obfuscation

What Does Data Obfuscation Mean?

Data obfuscation (DO) is a form of data masking where data is purposely scrambled to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive materials. This form of encryption results in unintelligible or confusing data. There are two types of DO encryption:

  1. Cryptographic DO: Input data encoding prior to being transferred to another encryption schema.
  2. Network security DO: Payload attack methods are purposely enlisted to avoid detection by network protection systems.

DO is also known as data scrambling and privacy preservation.

Techopedia Explains Data Obfuscation

Data obfuscation techniques are used to prevent the intrusion of private and sensitive online data, such as electronic health records (EHR). However, issues have stemmed from an inability to vigorously prevent privacy attacks. Additionally, DO techniques do not preserve data clusters, and there is not a set of standards for DO technique comparison.

Because of these challenges, IT researchers have proposed a more robust DO technique known as Nearest Neighbor Data Substitution (NeNDS), which is favored because of its privacy protection features and ability to sustain data clusters. The same researchers continue to prove that reverse engineering is easily accomplished with geometric transformations related to cluster preservations. For these and other reasons, there is a growing consensus that DO techniques may be key to maintaining EHR privacy.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…