University of Tasmania
155480 - A privacy-preserving desk sensor.pdf (1022.56 kB)

A privacy-preserving desk sensor for monitoring healthy movement breaks in smart office environments with the internet of things

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 16:35 authored by Ananda MaitiAnanda Maiti, Anjia YeAnjia Ye, Matthew SchmidtMatthew Schmidt, Scott PedersenScott Pedersen
Smart workplace Internet of Things (IoT) solutions rely on several sensors deployed efficiently in the workplace environment to collect accurate data to meet system goals. A vital issue for these sensor-based IoT solutions is privacy. Ideally, the occupants must be monitored discreetly, and the strategies for maintaining privacy are dependent on the nature of the data required. This paper proposes a new sensor design approach for IoT solutions in the workplace that protects occupants’ privacy. We focus on a novel sensor that autonomously detects and captures human movements in the office to monitor a person’s sedentary behavior. The sensor guides an eHealth solution that uses continuous feedback about desk behaviors to prompt healthy movement breaks for seated workers. The proposed sensor and its privacy-preserving characteristics can enhance the eHealth solution system’s performance. Compared to self-reporting, intrusive, and other data collection techniques, this sensor can collect the information reliably and timely. We also present the data analysis specific to this new sensor that measures two physical distance parameters in real-time and uses their difference to determine human actions. This architecture aims to collect precise data at the sensor design level rather than to protect privacy during the data analysis phase.


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School of Information and Communication Technology



Place of publication

Matthaeusstrasse 11, Basel, Switzerland, Ch-4057

Rights statement

Copyright: © 2023 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license (

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Telehealth; Behaviour and health; Preventive medicine