Holistic Privacy for Electricity, Water, and Natural Gas Metering in Next Generation Smart Homes

Cihan Emre Kement, Bulent Tavli, Hakan Gultekin, Halim Yanikomeroglu

In smart electricity grids, High Time-Granularity (HTG) electricity usage data can be decomposed into individual appliance load signatures via Non-Intrusive Appliance Load Monitoring (NIALM) techniques, which can be exploited to expose appliance usage profiles. Various methods ranging from load shaping to noise addition and data aggregation have been proposed to mitigate this problem. However, with the growing scarcity of natural resources, utilities other than electricity, such as water and natural gas, have also begun to be subject to HTG metering, which creates privacy issues similar to that of electricity. Therefore, employing privacy protection counter measures for electricity usage only is ineffective for appliances that utilize additional/other metered resources. As such, existing privacy counter measures and metrics need to be reevaluated to address not only electricity, but also any other resource that is metered. Furthermore, a holistic privacy protection approach for all metered resources must be adopted as the information leak from any of the resources has a potential to render the privacy preserving counter measures for all the other resources futile. This paper introduces the privacy preservation problem for multiple HTG metered resources and explores potential solutions for its mitigation.

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