Integrating artificial intelligence and technology has been incredibly useful. The more that we incorporate AI, the less we rely on human labor as well as decrease potential human error. AI creates convenience in many of our daily activities. It increases the ease of activities such as product purchases, scheduling, data storage and recall, socializing, and so much more. We’ve come to know and trust the abilities and the nature of artificial intelligence integration within our everyday lives. However, the ethics of these programs and algorithms have been noted to sometimes be flawed. These issues lead one to wonder some difficult questions. Can morals and ethics be programmed without flaw? Can fairness be achieved with the removal of human judgement? Is there such a thing as ethical AI?

Questionable AI results

There have a been a few known cases where artificial intelligence displayed actions that were considered unethical. For example, applying AI to screen candidates for a job, users found AI was favoring male applicants over female. In another case, users manipulated a chatbot into using obscene language and speech. These cases, as well as others, have brought attention to the question of ethics in AI. We know it must be done, but how? In cases such as hiring a good candidate, users want the system to disregard factors such as sex and race. However, those factors are dangerous to disregard in the field of healthcare. Organizations are working to find the right balance to ensure the use of ethical AI.

Important Factors for Ethical AI

In order to achieve ethical AI, some factors must be considered and improved upon. Applying these factors is a big step to ensuring maintain ethical best practices.

1. Human Oversight 

As ethical AI is improved and refined, it is important to keep human involvement intact. Humans should have the ability to oversee the operations of AI to ensure that it is following moral and ethical practices. This provides a safeguard to all users.

2. Privacy

It is incredibly important that users protect data and information. Ethical AI is not possible if user’s personal information is threatened. There have been cases where data is collected, but organizations are unclear about how it will be used or by whom. If you’re ever concerned that your data has been compromised, look into a security assessment to establish weak points.

3. Equality

As in the case where an AI algorithm favored male applicants, it is important to monitor for ethical AI and check it for fairness. Results might reveal that a certain demographic is favored or ignored in comparison with others. In that case, undertake studies of the algorithm to see how and why the results are skewed.

4. Upfront Information

Make the development process transparent information to users. Data collection, its use, as well as the process of creation must be transparent. in order to result in ethical AI.

5. Responsibility

Above all, organizations who use AI must willingly accept full responsibility for its successes and failures. This responsibility may be moral or legal. If there are flaws in the design resulting in unethical practice. In that case, IT developers must adhere to a code of ethics. Correction of flaws is inherent in that code. Developers must stand by that promise in order assure ethical AI systems and practices. While AI certainly adds convenience and ease to many everyday tasks, it’s important to understand the risks and flaws that may exist in those designs. Are you on Facebook? We are, too. Let’s be friends!