ACCA: Building trust and ethics in AI to combat fraud and economic crimes

24 January 2020

EU experts discussed how Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and robotic process automation (RPA) can help transform the fight against money laundering, fraud and economic crimes, stressing the need for international cooperation and collaboration at a joint ACCA-EY-Visa conference in Brussels.

The phenomena of fraud, including payment fraud, and economic crimes are not new ones — far from it. However, a new generation of very creative criminals is now benefitting from the rapid development and spread of digital and cyber technologies: it is a globalised, borderless and intensely complex problem, further exacerbated by the rapid evolution of the Internet of Things (IoT).

AI, ML and RPA can help transform the fight against money laundering, fraud and economic crimes, but in creating the ethical and regulatory framework around these issues, it is crucial to strike a balance in line with existing legislation, without affecting the ability to actively counter fraud in real-time nor also stifle innovation. It is not an easy task, and it’s one that needs open debate.

All speakers agreed that to combat fraud and economic crimes in the digital era, international cooperation and collaboration are essential, highlighting also the crucial role of trust and enforcement.

Jeanne Boillet, Global Assurance Innovation Leader, EY opened the debate: ‘Combining the key benefits of AI with human insights and Forensics Data Analytics will be a real game-changer in the future. In coming years, AI will be a vital weapon in our armory in the war against economic crime. But for this vision to have a real impact, a comprehensive approach across people, process and technology is key.’

Jessica Lennard, Senior Director, Global Data and AI Initiatives, Visa, who moderated the panel discussion said: ‘AI and ML are driving an increase in large-scale global industrialised economic crime. However, the international community of businesses, regulators and law enforcement are also using these advanced technologies to tackle the growing threat, with cross-border coordination and an intense focus on investment and innovation.’

Full press release on ACCA

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