Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 34 (NeurIPS 2021)
Klas Leino, Matt Fredrikson
Certifiable local robustness, which rigorously precludes small-norm adversarial examples, has received significant attention as a means of addressing security concerns in deep learning. However, for some classification problems, local robustness is not a natural objective, even in the presence of adversaries; for example, if an image contains two classes of subjects, the correct label for the image may be considered arbitrary between the two, and thus enforcing strict separation between them is unnecessary. In this work, we introduce two relaxed safety properties for classifiers that address this observation: (1) relaxed top-k robustness, which serves as the analogue of top-k accuracy; and (2) affinity robustness, which specifies which sets of labels must be separated by a robustness margin, and which can be $\epsilon$-close in $\ell_p$ space. We show how to construct models that can be efficiently certified against each relaxed robustness property, and trained with very little overhead relative to standard gradient descent. Finally, we demonstrate experimentally that these relaxed variants of robustness are well-suited to several significant classification problems, leading to lower rejection rates and higher certified accuracies than can be obtained when certifying "standard" local robustness.