A Tool for Privacy-Preserving Data Sharing with High Utility

What is OptimShare?

OptimShare is a powerful tool that tackles the seemingly intractable challenges of general data sharing and allows custodians to appropriately determine the levels of control required for sharing while protecting against the risk of reidentification and minimising the consequences of any such reidentification. This allows custodians to protect individual privacy whilst unlocking value from data. OptimShare is available in both desktop and server-based versions. This innovation supports enhanced planning, service delivery, and resource management across the governmental and private sectors, elevating the nation’s quality of life and cultivating a prosperous data services sector. It is available as both a desktop and a server-based version.


Risk Assessment of Shared Data

Risk Assessment of Shared Data

OptimShare assesses risks using a novel concept called the Cell Surprise Factor (CSF), a probabilistic measure evaluating the distinctiveness and uniqueness of dataset values. This assists in computing the potential exposure of sensitive data, guiding the privacy preservation process

Privacy-Preserving Data Sharing

Privacy-Preserving Data Sharing

OptimShare uses differential privacy as the core of its privacy-preserving mechanism. This approach involves selectively perturbing data attributes and balancing privacy needs with data utility. Differential privacy is applied through iterative procedures, refining data attributes to meet specified privacy requirements derived using fuzzy logic.

Evaluating Risks Following a Breach

Evaluating Risks Following a Breach

OptimShare conducts an in-depth analysis of privacy breaches by evaluating changes in probabilities for each unknown attribute through CSF analyses and deep neural networks.

Data Science on Privacy-Preserved Data

Data Science on Privacy-Preserved Data

OptimShare allows data science to be conducted on privacy-preserving datasets. OptimShare utilises iterative data perturbation and assessments to ensure that while data are perturbed to preserve privacy, they retain sufficient utility for meaningful analysis

Low Computational Requirement

Low Computational Requirement

Despite its complex functionalities, OptimShare is designed to operate efficiently with and without the need for extensive computational resources like GPU clusters. This feature significantly reduces operational costs, making it a cost-effective solution for privacy-preserving data sharing and analysis.


OptimShare Stand-alone Version

Stand-alone Version

Designed for small-scale datasets and/or local use. It is available in Windows, Mac, and Linux versions.

OptimShare Server Version

Server Version

Designed for large-scale datasets. The system ensures security and data privacy by allowing dataset owners exclusive control and isolating servers from external access.




WA Government

Peter Bouhlas, Chief Information Security Officer, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Office of the Digital Government (DGov)

The Personal Information Factor (PIF) tool is a privacy tool which assesses the risks to an individual’s data within any dataset; allowing targeted protection mechanisms to be put in place. PIF has been released on GitHub as open source. In addition, the OptimShare tool is being developed and trialled by the Government of Western Australia. This tool, an advancement on PIF, aims to remove the manual process by automatically correcting identified risks to a defined tolerance. The Government of WA may use the tool to meet future policy requirements. OptimShare is anticipated to provide additional assurance when sharing data sets between agencies and third parties thereby protecting citizens privacy.

NSW Government

Ian Oppermann, ServiceGen Co-founder, Industry Professor at UTS, Former NSW Chief Data Scientist (2015 - 2023)

OptimShare is another Australian and world first. It was (is being) recognised as a finalist for the iAward 2023 NSW. Its areas of novelty were also sufficient to allow for an international patent to be filed. Beyond NSW government, the Western Australian (WA) Government is exploring the implementation of OptimShare for privacy-preserving data sharing in health services (WA Health) and transport (WA Transport) within the state. OptimShare has received highly positive feedback from industry partners such as NSW Transport, NSW Education, NSW Customer Service, NSW Privacy Commission, and Revenue NSW Revenue. OptimShare offers (easy to use) a standalone version and a web-based solution for increased accessibility and flexibility for all users. The team at Data61/ Cybersecurity CRC took on an “impossible” challenge of general protections for data sharing at scale. Whilst that challenge remains, the team have demonstrated real and meaningful progress towards elements of data sharing for row-and-column data sets. Based on the frameworks developed, more general results can be expected soon.

Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the many Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and honour their Elders past and present.

We respect their deep enduring connection to their lands, waterways and surrounding clan groups since time immemorial. We cherish the richness of First Nations Peoples’ artistic and cultural expressions.

We are privileged to gather on this Country and through this website to share knowledge with future generations.