Time for tech
Trust is a critical for the adoption of new technologies. High trust means early adopters are prepared to play with new concepts, that breakthrough ideas get trialled and validated, reckons HSBC. Low trust suppresses innovation and great innovations might be ignored. And a new report, Trust in Technology, published by the bank, shows there’s a real need to focus on improving trust right now.
Artificial intelligence, for one, is not yet in the frame. Just 8% of consumers surveyed by the bank would trust a humanoid advisor programmed by experts to offer mortgage advice, compared to 41% trusting a mortgage broker. In contrast, 9% would be likely to use a horoscope to guide investment choices, and 10% might be influenced by the mere flip of a coin.
“The principle that trust in technology is built over time, based on hard evidence, explains the hesitancy around new products and services,” says the report. “Chatbots, AI and biometrics are developing fast, and are yet to prove functional reliability to doubters.”
So, how to tack the tech trust issue? HSBC reckons the path to high trust in fintech has five elements:
Investment in education to close the gap between technological development and public awareness
Kitemarking to display compliance with official standards guaranteeing minimum levels of security and performance
Accelerating biometric and behavioural security, with HSBC pointing out that it is possible to boost security while minimising annoyance for users
Regulation, including transparent algorithms, with 75% od respondents believing it to be important when banks introduce a new technology.
“These measures directly address the trust deficit,” says the report. “The impact could be significant. The world is at risk of creating distinct classes of technology users, with less-able users increasingly left behind.”