Hello!

My name is Damien Desfontaines — also known as Ted, or any pseudonym recognized by the (Ted)+ regular expression — and this is the sober version of my personal webpage. The fancier one, which is now quite outdated, can be found right here.

About me

I'm a privacy software engineer for Google, where I lead the anonymization consulting team. My job is to make it easy to safely anonymize data.

In December 2020, I defended my PhD thesis at ETH Zürich, which I worked on part-time in the Information Security Group, under the supervision of David Basin.

Previously, I studied at the École normale supérieure, where I completed a Master's degree in mathematical logic and theoretical computer science called the LMFI. Before that, I did the first year of the MPRI, a theoretical computer science master.

You can find more information on my LinkedIn profile. I'm also @TedOnPrivacy on Twitter.

Scientific papers

When I was studying for my Master's degree, I worked on pretty theoretical stuff.

Since them, both on my PhD time and on my engineering time, I've been working on data anonymization.

Other publications

During the COVID-19 crisis, I helped several efforts to publish anonymized data from Google users to help researchers and public health authorities understand and combat the pandemic. For two of these projects, we published a technical description of the anonymization process: the Community Mobility Reports (PDF) and the Search Trends Symptom Dataset (PDF).

In 2020, I was interviewed by the ACM with my colleague Miguel Guevara to discuss our efforts around differential privacy. The interview (PDF) was published in ACM Queue and Communications of the ACM.

I have a blog where I mostly discuss anonymization in simple terms. I also published my PhD thesis online as a series of Web pages, marking down the sections that don't have too much math in them.

Finally, my team at Google publishes and maintains open-source differential privacy software, accessible on our GitHub repository.

Things I like, things I do

Contact

To get in touch with me, you can send an e-mail to se.niatnofsed@neimad (beware when copying it). You can also send me a message on Twitter, though I am slightly more likely to miss it. I also use WhatsApp and Signal, feel free to ask me for my number if that's your favorite communication method.

And if you are a hipster fan of old-school letters, you can use my office address (and send me postcards ♥):
    Damien Desfontaines
    Brandschenkestrasse 110
    8002 ZÜRICH
    SWITZERLAND
or ask me directly for my personal address.