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New initiative to promote responsible use of AI

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Veritas allows financial institutions to evaluate ethics, transparency of solutions

A new initiative is under way to help financial institutions promote the responsible adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics.

Veritas, as the initiative is called, will allow institutions to evaluate their artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics-driven solutions against the principles of fairness, ethics, accountability and transparency.

These principles were devised by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the financial industry last year.

Veritas aims to provide financial institutions with a verifiable way to incorporate the principles into their AI and data analytics solutions.

It will comprise open source tools that can be applied to different business lines, such as retail banking and corporate finance, and in different markets.

Mr David Hardoon, special adviser (artificial intelligence) at MAS, said: "With Veritas, financial institutions will have the guideposts and toolkit to institute sound AI governance practices.

"This will pave the way for a vibrant and responsible AI-driven financial centre in Singapore."

The initiative, which forms part of Singapore's national AI plan, was announced by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat at the Singapore FinTech Festival and Singapore Week of Innovation and Technology(SFF x Switch) conference yesterday.

He said at the event: "AI has the potential to transform financial services, but must be used in a safe and responsible manner."

The Veritas consortium has 17 members, including MAS and 14 financial institutions.

It will report on its findings and conclusions next year.

Interested organisations are welcome to participate in the consortium.

Meanwhile, MAS managing director Ravi Menon said yesterday that the authority will restart its effort to launch a centralised electronic know-your-customer project.

"We are taking another crack at it," said Mr Menon, during a press conference to launch the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) innovation hub in Singapore.

"With the BIS innovation hub centre here, I think it is a wonderful opportunity to see how this... can dovetail with the work that the centre will be doing."

BIS has established one of its first innovation hubs outside of Switzerland in Singapore, with the hub to focus on public digital infrastructure and a platform connecting regulators to technology solutions for a start.The hub, which was launched yesterday on the sidelines of the SFF x Switch conference, will work on setting up a framework for public digital infrastructure on identity, consent and data sharing. - THE STRAITS TIMES