A Comparative Study on Unsupervised Anomaly Detection for Time Series: Experiments and Analysis.

Yan Zhao, Liwei Deng, Xuanhao Chen, Chenjuan Guo, Bin Yang, Tung Kieu, Feiteng Huang, Torben Bach Pedersen, Kai Zheng, Christian S. Jensen

Research output: Other contributionResearch


The continued digitization of societal processes translates into a proliferation of time series data that cover applications such as fraud detection, intrusion detection, and energy management, where anomaly detection is often essential to enable reliability and safety. Many recent studies target anomaly detection for time series data. Indeed, area of time series anomaly detection is characterized by diverse data, methods, and evaluation strategies, and comparisons in existing studies consider only part of this diversity, which makes it difficult to select the best method for a particular problem setting. To address this shortcoming, we introduce taxonomies for data, methods, and evaluation strategies, provide a comprehensive overview of unsupervised time series anomaly detection using the taxonomies, and systematically evaluate and compare state-of-the-art traditional as well as deep learning techniques. In the empirical study using nine publicly available datasets, we apply the most commonly-used performance evaluation metrics to typical methods under a fair implementation standard. Based on the structuring offered by the taxonomies, we report on empirical studies and provide guidelines, in the form of comparative tables, for choosing the methods most suitable for particular application settings. Finally, we propose research directions for this dynamic field.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2022
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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