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Artificial Intelligence: Futuristic Dream or Realizable Present?

Artificial intelligence has been one of the hottest topics within the banking industry over the past few years. Every day, banking professionals are bombarded with emails from publications and vendors relating how AI is the greatest thing to happen to the banking industry; yet, according the American Banker, the excitement isn't leading to implementation. In fact, a recent survey from Arizent -- parent company of American Banker -- notes that "20% of banks named AI or machine learning as the technology they are most excited about."


So, what is causing the hesitancy? Well, there are many factors. These include, but are not limited too:

  • Potential risk and regulations
  • Lack of talent to develop or deploy
  • Lack of internal resources
  • Hesitancy to "dive right in" -- a "crawl before you walk" mentality
  • Lack of awareness of AI technology for specific use cases

These factors are particularly true for regional banks and credit unions.

Educating Regional Banks and Credit Unions on AI Use Cases

Regional banks and credit unions are impacted most when it comes to many of the above factors. However, one issue that stands above the rest is lack of awareness of AI technology for specific use cases.

Over the past several months, OrboGraph's Chief Strategy Officer, Joe Gregory, and Marketing Manager, James Bi, had the opportunity to speak at multiple conferences to discuss the topic of check fraud and the technologies that can assist financial institutions in fighting back against fraudsters.

These gatherings included:

While speaking to attendees, we noted a clear lack of awareness of the AI solutions that are available for check fraud, and how these differ from traditional fraud solutions. At the same time, there was a tremendous desire to learn as much as possible.

After both of my presentations at the Wespay and Macha conferences, I was able to have great conversations with the attendees. They appreciated the information and wanted to learn more about the AI solutions available to them.

-- Joe Gregory, Chief Strategy Officer at OrboGraph

Joe casual circ

Joe J. Gregory
Chief Strategy Officer
LinkedIn Profile →

James Bi echoes sentiments from Joe Gregory regarding their experiences at the Alogent and ThreatAdvice conferences.

Many of the attendees were aware of standard OCR technologies to read/extract data from paper checks and their application for fraud detection. However, they were less informed about how AI technology provides superior results and a massive increase in detecting counterfeit, forged, and altered checks.

-- James Bi, Marketing Manager at OrboGraph


James Bi
Marketing Manager
LinkedIn Profile →

Indeed, AI and ML technology differ from OCR technologies when it comes to both reading and extracting data from checks, along with detection of fraudulent checks. Check fraud detection, for instance, deployed image analysis as a one to one comparison of the image of the deposit check and a previous cleared check.

With image forensic AI, the AI technology analyzes the full images of checks and compares them to a trained profile of multiple cleared checks, utilizing Check Stock Validation (CSV-AI), Automated Signature Verification (ASV-AI), Writer Verification (WV-AI), and Alteration Detection using check style comparison and amount discrepancy.

Fraud Prevention Cropped-OrbNet Forensic AI-01

As Zachary Jarvinen, vice president of Exact Payments, notes in a recent BAI article:

“AI can drastically improve the accuracy, speed, and scalability of data analysis. AI algorithms are able to identify patterns in data much faster than humans, and they can also process vast amounts of data at once. In addition, AI tools are capable of automatically learning from past experiences and adapting to new situations, which can lead to better decision-making.” 

Artificial Intelligence in Banking: Now and the Future

As we've showcased, AI and ML technologies are here and ready to be utilized by banks of all sizes.

Christine Parker, founder and managing partner of Crossroads Advisory Partners, notes:

“Artificial intelligence technologies are increasingly integral to the world we live in, and banks of all sizes need to deploy these technologies at scale to remain relevant.” 

IT Technician, software engineer working with big data on digital tablet and AI connecting with data center, data engineering, digital technology, machine learning, software engineering concept

The BAI article goes on to note that, due to their bigger tech budgets, larger banks have the resources to jump ahead of the curve. However, with the help of fintech partners like OrboGraph, regional banks and credit unions can deploy the same technologies -- joining the AI revolution --  without the heavy overhead.

The AI revolution in banking is already underway. Banks of all sizes have the ability to deploy these technologies; they just need to find the right use cases — such as check fraud detection — that fit their needs.

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