May 20, 2024

Increasing Gen AI Use in Finance Amplifies Risks

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) is continuing to evolve. From predictive algorithms to personalized recommendations, AI has woven itself into the fabric of consumers’ daily lives, reshaping industries and transforming how individuals and businesses interact with information. 

In the finance sector, generative AI is being utilized for various purposes, as outlined in the latest “Generative AI Tracker®” by PYMNTS Intelligence and AI-ID. Incumbent banks are adopting AI for risk management, while upstarts are leveraging AI to innovate marketing and customer service. 

Furthermore, generative AI is significantly advancing banking-as-a-service (BaaS) initiatives and embedded finance, with applications ranging from personalized customer services to anti-money laundering programs. 

Financial services providers are also deploying AI solutions to transform financial chatbots into adept problem-solvers. In fact, the integration of AI has resulted in a 65% uptick in response efficiency within the banking sector, and is shaping a future where digital assistants move beyond listening, evolving to comprehend and even anticipate banking consumers’ needs, per insights detailed in PYMNTS Intelligence’s August Embedded Finance Tracker® Series Report.” 

However, alongside its numerous benefits, a significant challenge looms: misinformation.

As generative AI creates new synthetic data and insights, there is a possibility of false or misleading information being disseminated, posing a significant threat to the integrity of information and decision-making processes.

As noted in the PYMNTS-AI-ID report, nearly 80% of consumers are concerned about the spread of misinformation facilitated by generative AI, underscoring how the very tools designed to enhance experiences and streamline access to knowledge also hold the power to amplify and disseminate misleading or inaccurate content.

generative AI, misinformation

It’s no different in the business world, with Wasim Khaled, CEO and co-founder of intelligence platform Blackbird.AI, telling PYMNTS that “misinformation and disinformation can be a company killer.” 

Khaled emphasized the substantial impact on businesses in a June interview, explaining how the widespread circulation of conflicting business narratives across the internet and online media platforms can pose an almost existential threat to industries. Importantly, this risk often emerges before companies are even aware of the harm being caused, he added.

Increasing Risk of Misinformation in Finance 

When the dissemination of information involves inaccurate financial data, it jeopardizes the integrity of financial decision-making, bearing severe consequences for both individuals and institutions reliant on accurate and trustworthy information, the PYMNTS-AI-ID study found. 

Additionally, the increased use of generative AI in the financial sector raises concerns about the exposure of sensitive banking data to security breaches. This concern intensifies in tandem with the escalating risk of data breaches and cyberattacks, mirroring the expanding integration of generative AI across various sectors.

Moreover, the adoption of generative AI in finance has the potential to widen the digital gap between developed and developing economies. While developed countries embrace AI technologies, developing nations may struggle to keep up, leading to disparities in access to financial services and opportunities.

To address these complexities and risks, understanding the nuances of this intersection between generative AI and misinformation is pivotal in navigating the complex landscape of today’s information-driven society.

Financial institutions are actively developing strategies to mitigate these risks and ensure the secure integration of generative AI, the study found. Organizations, on the other hand, are focusing on developing tools to manage the risks associated with generative AI, particularly in areas of model explainability. 

Regulatory frameworks for generative AI in finance are also crucial, the study noted further, as regulators strive to develop policies ensuring the safe and ethical utilization of the technology within the financial sector.

In sum, generative AI has the potential to revolutionize the finance and banking industry, but it also brings challenges and risks. Addressing concerns like misinformation, data security and the digital divide will necessitate robust regulatory frameworks and collaborative efforts within the industry. 

These measures are crucial to ensure the responsible and advantageous integration of generative AI within consumer finance and the wider business domain. 

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