Subtractive Aggregation for Attributed Network Anomaly Detection

Shuang Zhou, Qiaoyu Tan, Zhiming Xu, Xiao Huang, Fu Lai Chung

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Attributed network anomaly detection is essential in various networked systems. It aims to detect nodes that significantly deviate from their corresponding background. In conventional anomaly detection, the background is defined as the vast majority. But in networks, anomalies can be local and look normal when compared with the majority. While several efforts have explored to consider communities as the background, it remains challenging to learn suitable communities for effective anomaly detection. Also, the patterns of anomalies are unknown and it is nontrivial to define criteria of anomalies. To bridge the gap, in this paper, we argue that, by using appropriate models, it is sufficient to simply consider neighbor nodes as the background to detect anomalies. Correspondingly, we propose a novel abnormality-aware graph neural network (AAGNN). It utilizes subtractive aggregation to represent each node as the deviation from its neighbors (the background). Normal nodes with high confidence are employed as labels to learn a tailored hypersphere as the criterion of anomalies. Experiments demonstrate that AAGNN surpasses state-of-the-art methods significantly.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCIKM 2021 - Proceedings of the 30th ACM International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781450384469
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2021
Event30th ACM International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, CIKM 2021 - Virtual, Online, Australia
Duration: 1 Nov 20215 Nov 2021

Publication series

NameInternational Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, Proceedings


Conference30th ACM International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management, CIKM 2021
CityVirtual, Online


  • anomaly detection
  • attributed networks
  • graph neural networks

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