A form of anonymisation where personal records are kept intact but specific identifying information, such as names, are replaced with anonymous identifiers. Compared to aggregation, de-identification carries a greater risk of data leakage: for example, if prison records include a prisoner’s criminal record and medical history, the prisoner could in many cases be identified even without their name by their criminal record, giving unauthorised access to their medical history. In other cases, this risk is absent, or the value of the un-aggregated data is so great that it is worth making de-identified data available subject to carefully designed safeguards.

Source: ODH

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