Privacy-Preserving Visual Localization with Event Cameras

Junho Kim,Young Min Kim,Yicheng Wu, Ramzi Zahreddine,Weston A. Welge,Gurunandan Krishnan, Sizhuo Ma, Jian Wang


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We present a robust, privacy-preserving visual localization algorithm using event cameras. While event cameras can potentially make robust localization due to high dynamic range and small motion blur, the sensors exhibit large domain gaps making it difficult to directly apply conventional image-based localization algorithms. To mitigate the gap, we propose applying event-to-image conversion prior to localization which leads to stable localization. In the privacy perspective, event cameras capture only a fraction of visual information compared to normal cameras, and thus can naturally hide sensitive visual details. To further enhance the privacy protection in our event-based pipeline, we introduce privacy protection at two levels, namely sensor and network level. Sensor level protection aims at hiding facial details with lightweight filtering while network level protection targets hiding the entire user's view in private scene applications using a novel neural network inference pipeline. Both levels of protection involve light-weight computation and incur only a small performance loss. We thus project our method to serve as a building block for practical location-based services using event cameras. The code and dataset will be made public through the following link:
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