Reconstruction and Membership Inference Attacks against Generative Models

Benjamin Hilprecht, Martin Härterich, Daniel Bernau

We present two information leakage attacks that outperform previous work on membership inference against generative models. The first attack allows membership inference without assumptions on the type of the generative model. Contrary to previous evaluation metrics for generative models, like Kernel Density Estimation, it only considers samples of the model which are close to training data records. The second attack specifically targets Variational Autoencoders, achieving high membership inference accuracy. Furthermore, previous work mostly considers membership inference adversaries who perform single record membership inference. We argue for considering regulatory actors who perform set membership inference to identify the use of specific datasets for training. The attacks are evaluated on two generative model architectures, Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) and Variational Autoencoders (VAEs), trained on standard image datasets. Our results show that the two attacks yield success rates superior to previous work on most data sets while at the same time having only very mild assumptions. We envision the two attacks in combination with the membership inference attack type formalization as especially useful. For example, to enforce data privacy standards and automatically assessing model quality in machine learning as a service setups. In practice, our work motivates the use of GANs since they prove less vulnerable against information leakage attacks while producing detailed samples.

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