Jiachen Sun, Yulong Cao, Christopher B Choy, Zhiding Yu, Anima Anandkumar, Zhuoqing Morley Mao, Chaowei Xiao
3D point cloud data is increasingly used in safety-critical applications such as autonomous driving. Thus, the robustness of 3D deep learning models against adversarial attacks becomes a major consideration. In this paper, we systematically study the impact of various self-supervised learning proxy tasks on different architectures and threat models for 3D point clouds with adversarial training. Specifically, we study MLP-based (PointNet), convolution-based (DGCNN), and transformer-based (PCT) 3D architectures. Through extensive experimentation, we demonstrate that appropriate applications of self-supervision can significantly enhance the robustness in 3D point cloud recognition, achieving considerable improvements compared to the standard adversarial training baseline. Our analysis reveals that local feature learning is desirable for adversarial robustness in point clouds since it limits the adversarial propagation between the point-level input perturbations and the model's final output. This insight also explains the success of DGCNN and the jigsaw proxy task in achieving stronger 3D adversarial robustness.