The robustness and security of natural language processing (NLP) models are significantly important in real-world applications. In the context of text classification tasks, adversarial examples can be designed by substituting words with synonyms under certain semantic and syntactic constraints, such that a well-trained model will give a wrong prediction. Therefore, it is crucial to develop techniques to provide a rigorous and provable robustness guarantee against such attacks. In this paper, we propose WordDP to achieve certified robustness against word substitution at- tacks in text classification via differential privacy (DP). We establish the connection between DP and adversarial robustness for the first time in the text domain and propose a conceptual exponential mechanism-based algorithm to formally achieve the robustness. We further present a practical simulated exponential mechanism that has efficient inference with certified robustness. We not only provide a rigorous analytic derivation of the certified condition but also experimentally compare the utility of WordDP with existing defense algorithms. The results show that WordDP achieves higher accuracy and more than 30X efficiency improvement over the state-of-the-art certified robustness mechanism in typical text classification tasks.
Recent studies have shown that adversarial examples can be generated by applying small perturbations to the inputs such that the well- trained deep learning models will misclassify. With the increasing number of safety and security-sensitive applications of deep learn- ing models, the robustness of deep learning models has become a crucial topic. The robustness of deep learning models for health- care applications is especially critical because the unique characteristics and the high financial interests of the medical domain make it more sensitive to adversarial attacks. Among the modalities of medical data, the clinical summaries have higher risks to be attacked because they are generated by third-party companies. As few works studied adversarial threats on clinical summaries, in this work we first apply adversarial attack to clinical summaries of electronic health records (EHR) to show the text-based deep learning systems are vulnerable to adversarial examples. Secondly, benefiting from the multi-modality of the EHR dataset, we propose a novel defense method, MATCH (Multimodal feATure Consistency cHeck), which leverages the consistency between multiple modalities in the data to defend against adversarial examples on a single modality. Our experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of MATCH on a hospital readmission prediction task comparing with baseline methods.
We aim to support digital humanities work related to the study of sacred texts. To do this, we propose to build a cross-lingual wordnet within the do-main of theology. We target the Collaborative Interlingual Index (CILI) directly instead of each individual wordnet. The paper presents background for this proposal: (1) an overview of concepts relevant to theology and (2) a summary of the domain-associated issues observed in the Princeton WordNet (PWN). We have found that definitions for concepts in this domain can be too restrictive, inconsistent, and unclear. Necessary synsets are missing, with the PWN being skewed towards Christianity. We argue that tackling problems in a single domain is a better method for improving CILI. By focusing on a single topic rather than a single language, this will result in the proper construction of definitions, romanization/translation of lemmas, and also improvements in use of/creation of a cross-lingual domain hierarchy.