University of Twente Student Theses


Privacy-Friendly Room Occupancy Measurement System

Jellema, Hylke Jesse (2023) Privacy-Friendly Room Occupancy Measurement System.

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Abstract:The modern data-driven society requires methods to collect accurate occupancy data for informed decision making, and comes with user privacy concerns and challenges. This thesis addresses the challenge of collecting accurate occupancy data while prioritizing user privacy. The study focuses on the Interaction Lab at the University of Twente, where a privacy-friendly occupancy measurement system is desired by the client. The research revolves around identifying stakeholder requirements, suitable data collection methods, achievable privacy given the requirements, and the prototyping choices. Finally, a system evaluation is performed. Reviewing literature and current implementations, highlights the privacy weaknesses of current technologies and the need for a private-by-design approach. Requirements were collected through interviews with lab users and the Lab Team. Ideation and specification phases led to the development of a prototype. The prototype utilizes an VL53L5CX Time-of-Flight sensor with an 8x8 pixel array connected to a Raspberry Pi 4, with a developed algorithm. The device observes a 2x2 meter zone at the entrance with a achieved sample rate of 17-20Hz. Data is collected locally and mitigated into day-parts. The limited observation zone, low resolution sensor, and data handling choices, are to ensure maximum user privacy. Additionally, Lab Team users can request the current occupancy for planning. The requirement evaluation confirmed the system's compliance with the set requirements. The performance evaluation achieved an accuracy of 96% in normal conditions. User and lab team supported the system with a positive reception, with suggestions for increased transparency. In conclusion, this thesis demonstrates the feasibility of a privacy-friendly occupancy measurement system, which respects user privacy through hardware design while maintaining high accuracy. Future research should explore the role and importance of hardware selection in ensuring privacy.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:01 general works, 50 technical science in general, 54 computer science, 70 social sciences in general
Programme:Creative Technology BSc (50447)
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