Abstract: Random data sketching (or projection) is now a classical technique enabling, for instance, approximate numerical linear algebra and machine learning algorithms with reduced computational complexity and memory. In this context, the possibility of performing data processing (such as pattern detection or classification) directly in the sketched domain without accessing the original data was previously achieved for linear random sketching methods and compressive sensing. In this work, we show how to estimate simple signal processing tasks (such as deducing local variations in a image) directly using random quadratic projections achieved by an optical processing unit. The same approach allows for naive data classification methods directly operated in the sketched domain. We report several experiments confirming the power of our approach.