Defense of Word-level Adversarial Attacks via Random Substitution Encoding

Zhaoyang Wang, Hongtao Wang

The adversarial attacks against deep neural networks on computer version tasks has spawned many new technologies that help protect models avoiding false prediction. Recently, word-level adversarial attacks on deep models of Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks have also demonstrated strong power, e.g., fooling a sentiment classification neural network to make wrong decision. Unfortunately, few previous literatures have discussed the defense of such word-level synonym substitution based attacks since they are hard to be perceived and detected. In this paper, we shed light on this problem and propose a novel defense framework called Random Substitution Encoding (RSE), which introduces a random substitution encoder into the training process of original neural networks. Extensive experiments on text classification tasks demonstrate the effectiveness of our framework on defense of word-level adversarial attacks, under various base and attack models.

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