Built-in Vulnerabilities to Imperceptible Adversarial Perturbations

19 Jun 2018  ·  Thomas Tanay, Jerone T. A. Andrews, Lewis D. Griffin ·

Designing models that are robust to small adversarial perturbations of their inputs has proven remarkably difficult. In this work we show that the reverse problem---making models more vulnerable---is surprisingly easy. After presenting some proofs of concept on MNIST, we introduce a generic tilting attack that injects vulnerabilities into the linear layers of pre-trained networks by increasing their sensitivity to components of low variance in the training data without affecting their performance on test data. We illustrate this attack on a multilayer perceptron trained on SVHN and use it to design a stand-alone adversarial module which we call a steganogram decoder. Finally, we show on CIFAR-10 that a poisoning attack with a poisoning rate as low as 0.1% can induce vulnerabilities to chosen imperceptible backdoor signals in state-of-the-art networks. Beyond their practical implications, these different results shed new light on the nature of the adversarial example phenomenon.

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