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Wisdom of the Contexts: Active Ensemble Learning for Contextual Anomaly Detection

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

In contextual anomaly detection (CAD), an object is only considered anomalous within a specific context. Most existing methods for CAD use a single context based on a set of user-specified contextual features. However, identifying the right context can be very challenging in practice, especially in datasets, with a large number of attributes. Furthermore, in real-world systems, there might be multiple anomalies that occur in different contexts and, therefore, require a combination of several "useful" contexts to unveil them. In this work, we leverage active learning and ensembles to effectively detect complex contextual anomalies in situations where the true contextual and behavioral attributes are unknown. We propose a novel approach, called WisCon (Wisdom of the Contexts), that automatically creates contexts from the feature set. Our method constructs an ensemble of multiple contexts, with varying importance scores, based on the assumption that not all useful contexts are equally so. Experiments show that WisCon significantly outperforms existing baselines in different categories (i.e., active classifiers, unsupervised contextual and non-contextual anomaly detectors, and supervised classifiers) on seven datasets. Furthermore, the results support our initial hypothesis that there is no single perfect context that successfully uncovers all kinds of contextual anomalies, and leveraging the "wisdom" of multiple contexts is necessary.


Robust Contextual Outlier Detection: Where Context Meets Sparsity

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Outlier detection is a fundamental data science task with applications ranging from data cleaning to network security. Given the fundamental nature of the task, this has been the subject of much research. Recently, a new class of outlier detection algorithms has emerged, called {\it contextual outlier detection}, and has shown improved performance when studying anomalous behavior in a specific context. However, as we point out in this article, such approaches have limited applicability in situations where the context is sparse (i.e. lacking a suitable frame of reference). Moreover, approaches developed to date do not scale to large datasets. To address these problems, here we propose a novel and robust approach alternative to the state-of-the-art called RObust Contextual Outlier Detection (ROCOD). We utilize a local and global behavioral model based on the relevant contexts, which is then integrated in a natural and robust fashion. We also present several optimizations to improve the scalability of the approach. We run ROCOD on both synthetic and real-world datasets and demonstrate that it outperforms other competitive baselines on the axes of efficacy and efficiency (40X speedup compared to modern contextual outlier detection methods). We also drill down and perform a fine-grained analysis to shed light on the rationale for the performance gains of ROCOD and reveal its effectiveness when handling objects with sparse contexts.


A Survey on Anomaly Detection for Technical Systems using LSTM Networks

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Anomalies represent deviations from the intended system operation and can lead to decreased efficiency as well as partial or complete system failure. As the causes of anomalies are often unknown due to complex system dynamics, efficient anomaly detection is necessary. Conventional detection approaches rely on statistical and time-invariant methods that fail to address the complex and dynamic nature of anomalies. With advances in artificial intelligence and increasing importance for anomaly detection and prevention in various domains, artificial neural network approaches enable the detection of more complex anomaly types while considering temporal and contextual characteristics. In this article, a survey on state-of-the-art anomaly detection using deep neural and especially long short-term memory networks is conducted. The investigated approaches are evaluated based on the application scenario, data and anomaly types as well as further metrics. To highlight the potential of upcoming anomaly detection techniques, graph-based and transfer learning approaches are also included in the survey, enabling the analysis of heterogeneous data as well as compensating for its shortage and improving the handling of dynamic processes.


Deep Context-Aware Novelty Detection

arXiv.org Machine Learning

A common assumption of novelty detection is that the distribution of both "normal" and "novel" data are static. However, this is often not the case in scenarios where data evolves over time, or when the definition of normal and novel depends on contextual information, leading to changes in these distributions. This can lead to significant difficulties when attempting to train a model on datasets where the distribution of normal data in one scenario is similar to that of novel data in another scenario. In this paper we propose a context-aware approach to novelty detection for deep autoencoders. We create a semi-supervised network architecture which utilises auxiliary labels in order to reveal contextual information and allows the model to adapt to a variety of normal and novel scenarios. We evaluate our approach on both synthetic image data and real world audio data displaying these characteristics.


OIAD: One-for-all Image Anomaly Detection with Disentanglement Learning

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Anomaly detection aims to recognize samples with anomalous and unusual patterns with respect to a set of normal data, which is significant for numerous domain applications, e.g. in industrial inspection, medical imaging, and security enforcement. There are two key research challenges associated with existing anomaly detention approaches: (1) many of them perform well on low-dimensional problems however the performance on high-dimensional instances is limited, such as images; (2) many of them depend on often still rely on traditional supervised approaches and manual engineering of features, while the topic has not been fully explored yet using modern deep learning approaches, even when the well-label samples are limited. In this paper, we propose a One-for-all Image Anomaly Detection system (OIAD) based on disentangled learning using only clean samples. Our key insight is that the impact of small perturbation on the latent representation can be bounded for normal samples while anomaly images are usually outside such bounded intervals, called structure consistency. We implement this idea and evaluate its performance for anomaly detention. Our experiments with three datasets show that OIAD can detect over $90\%$ of anomalies while maintaining a high low false alarm rate. It can also detect suspicious samples from samples labeled as clean, coincided with what humans would deem unusual.