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Randomization matters How to defend against strong adversarial attacks

Rafael Pinot · Raphael Ettedgui · Geovani Rizk · Yann Chevaleyre · Jamal Atif

Keywords: [ Adversarial Examples ] [ Game Theory and Mechanism Design ]


\emph{Is there a classifier that ensures optimal robustness against all adversarial attacks?} This paper tackles the question by adopting a game-theoretic point of view. We present the adversarial attacks and defenses problem as an \emph{infinite} zero-sum game where classical results (\emph{e.g.} Nash or Sion theorems) do not apply. We demonstrate the non-existence of a Nash equilibrium in our game when the classifier and the Adversary are both deterministic, hence giving a negative answer to the above question in the deterministic regime. Nonetheless, the question remains open in the randomized regime. We tackle this problem by showing that, under mild conditions on the dataset distribution, any deterministic classifier can be outperformed by a randomized one. This gives arguments for using randomization, and leads us to a simple method for building randomized classifiers that are robust to state-or-the-art adversarial attacks. Empirical results validate our theoretical analysis, and show that our defense method considerably outperforms Adversarial Training against strong adaptive attacks, by achieving 0.55 accuracy under adaptive PGD-attack on CIFAR10, compared to 0.42 for Adversarial training.

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