Artificial Intelligence Going Where No Man Has Gone Before…

By G. Kevin Mathis, IAC Student Intern

Star Trek’s opening line states that the USS Enterprise’s mission is to boldly go where no man has gone before.  Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, and Dr. McCoy led a crew that boldly pushed the realms of imagination.  Accomplishing their stated goal and solving challenges that they encountered in every episode required the crew of the Enterprise to challenge social norms, work together, and create novel technologies.

Artificial Intelligence (AI), “intelligence of machines,” promises to push the securities industry to boldly go where it has not gone before.  AI is being incorporated into the financial services industry at warp speed.  Thanks to AI computers are performing tasks that humans would traditionally perform using human intelligence.  Personalized automated advice and chatbots provide investors with customer service.  FINRA implements sophisticated algorithms (the language of AI) to conduct highly sophisticated fraud surveillance.  Securities traders use AI to gauge social media sentiment, to highly sophisticated fraud surveillance. AI, like Star Trek, pushes the realms of our imagination in terms of what we can do with technology.  This can be both exciting and frightening.  FINRA’s IOI has decided to step in to ensure that investors and firms experience more of the exciting and helpful aspects associated with AI and less of the unknown and troubling problems that can result from AI.  FINRA is indicating that they will still require either human supervision or intervention to ensure that everyone, and not just the machines, boldly influence the future of the financial services industry.