Disentangling Improves VAEs' Robustness to Adversarial Attacks

25 Sep 2019  ·  Matthew Willetts, Alexander Camuto, Stephen Roberts, Chris Holmes ·

This paper is concerned with the robustness of VAEs to adversarial attacks. We highlight that conventional VAEs are brittle under attack but that methods recently introduced for disentanglement such as β-TCVAE (Chen et al., 2018) improve robustness, as demonstrated through a variety of previously proposed adversarial attacks (Tabacof et al. (2016); Gondim-Ribeiro et al. (2018); Kos et al.(2018)). This motivated us to develop Seatbelt-VAE, a new hierarchical disentangled VAE that is designed to be significantly more robust to adversarial attacks than existing approaches, while retaining high quality reconstructions.

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