In an attempt to better define the assessment methodologies for the Fairness, Ethics, Accountability and Transparency (FEAT) principles, a total of five white papers have been released by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS); outlining how artificial intelligence (AI) can be used responsibly by financial institutions (FIs).
The white papers were published by the Veritas Consortium, comprising 27 industry players. The Consortium has also reportedly released an open-source toolkit to help FIs adopt the Fairness Assessment Methodology.
The white papers provide:
- a comprehensive FEAT checklist for FIs to adopt during their AI and Data Analytics (AIDA) software development lifecycles;
- an enhanced Fairness Assessment Methodology to enable FIs to define their AIDA system’s fairness objectives, identify personal attributes of individuals and any unintentional bias;
- a new Ethics and Accountability Assessment Methodology, which provides a framework for FIs to carry out quantifiable measurement of ethical practices, in addition to the qualitative practices currently adopted;
- a new Transparency Assessment Methodology which helps FIs determine whether and how much internal/external transparency is needed to explain and interpret the predictions of machine learning models.
To accelerate FIs’ adoption of the FEAT methodologies and principles, the Consortium has developed an open-source software toolkit. The toolkit enables the automation of the fairness metrics assessment and allows for visualisation of the interface for fairness assessment and for the plug-ins to integrate with FI’s IT systems.
Four core teams within the Consortium were formed to develop the methodologies, toolkit and business use case studies in the banking and insurance sectors:
- Swiss Re and Accenture refined the Fairness Assessment Methodology and applied it to insurance predictive underwriting;
- United Overseas Bank (UOB), AXA and Accenture developed the Ethics and Accountability Assessment Methodology and applied it to customer marketing and insurance fraud detection;
- Standard Chartered Bank (SCB), HSBC and Truera developed the Transparency Assessment Methodology and applied it to credit risk scoring and customer marketing; and
- Accenture and Bank of China developed Veritas Toolkit version one with the support from BNY Mellon, HSBC, SCB and UOB.
In the next phase, the consortium will develop additional use cases and run pilots with selected FI members to integrate the methodologies with members’ existing governance framework. MAS is also collaborating with the Infocomm Media Development Authority and the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) to include the Toolkit in the PDPC’s Trustworthy AI testing framework.
Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief Fintech Officer, MAS, said: “The new open-source software, assessment methodologies and enhanced guidance will further improve the technical capabilities of financial institutions in developing responsible AI for the financial sector. The Veritas initiative continues to deliver tangible outcomes that demonstrate collaborative public-private partnership to drive trust in the adoption of AI technology, enhance confidence and foster innovation in Singapore’s fintech ecosystem.”
There have industry-wide concerns for how the use of AI technology will translate into the practical application of open banking; an area in which the Singapore region has enjoyed unparalleled success. The country, unlike in other parts of the world in particular the UK which has been more legislative and mandate driven, has appeared to be a balance between market demand and legislative. For instance, this has been with MAS publishing the Financial World: Finance-As-A Service API Playbook in collaboration with the Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS); which serves as a comprehensive guide in identifying and developing the APIs in an organisation.