Cortical Features for Defense Against Adversarial Audio Attacks

Ilya Kavalerov, Frank Zheng, Wojciech Czaja, Rama Chellappa

We propose using a computational model of the auditory cortex as a defense against adversarial attacks on audio. We apply several white-box iterative optimization-based adversarial attacks to an implementation of Amazon Alexa's HW network, and a modified version of this network with an integrated cortical representation, and show that the cortical features help defend against universal adversarial examples. At the same level of distortion, the adversarial noises found for the cortical network are always less effective for universal audio attacks. We make our code publicly available at

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