All posts by Scott Zoldi

Analytics & Optimization Explainable AI Breaks Out of the Black Box

Box stamped AI
May312017

Over the last 12 months or so there’s been incredible excitement about artificial intelligence and all of the amazing things it can do for us—everything from driving cars to making pizza (super-cool video!). But — and this is a big “but” — artificial intelligence comes with many challenges, including trying to decipher what these models have learned, and thus their decision criteria. In my last post, I discussed how regulations such as Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation will demand Explainable AI. This is a field of science that attempts to remove the black box and deliver AI performance while also providing an explanation as to the “how” and “why” a model derives its decisions. DARPA says Explainable AI or XAI: Produces more explainable models, while maintaining a high level of learning performance (prediction accuracy); and Enables human users to understand, appropriately trust, and effectively manage the emerging generation of artificially intelligent partners. Three Ways... [Read More]

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Analytics & Optimization GDPR and Other Regulations Demand Explainable AI

Box stamped AI
May242017

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a wide-ranging and complex regulation intended to strengthen and unify data protection for all individuals within the European Union (EU). A year ago I blogged about the data governance ramifications of GDPR, and in this blog I’ll focus on another facet of GDPR to talk about a related analytics topic: explainable artificial intelligence (AI). First, let’s start with GDPR. Article 22 of GDPR, “Automated individual decision-making, including profiling,” concerns the use of data in decision-making that affects individuals, such as a person applying for a loan. The regulation says: “1. The data subject shall have the right not to be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing, including profiling, which produces legal effects concerning him or her or similarly significantly affects him or her.” Point 2 of Article 22 describes exclusions (including situations involving the person’s explicit consent, such as applying... [Read More]

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Fraud & Security Behavioral Analytics Attack Fraud, Cyber and Financial Crime

Hand holding analytics
Apr122017

Economies of scale is one of my favorite economic principles. It’s especially cool to see how FICO customers can realize associated benefits by using our behavioral analytic technology. IDC predicts that in 2017, behavioral analytics across compliance, fraud, and cyber detection and prevention will be in place at 15% of banks, helping them to avoid losses, regulatory fines and sanctions. Banks have already made a big start in the fraud space. FICO introduced behavioral analytics in the early 1990s and we currently analyze two-thirds of the world’s payment card transactions, in real time, for fraud. Now, FICO’s proven behavioral analytics can be applied by forward-thinking institutions to fight a wide range of financial crimes. In doing so, banks can gain powerful technology economies of scale, too, leveraging mature, market-proven analytic models to benefit new domains within their business. How do behavioral analytics work?   A quick search may tell you that... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance How to Build Credit Risk Models Using AI and Machine Learning

boxing poster with machine learning vs scorecard modeling
Apr062017

Which works better for modeling credit risk: traditional scorecards or artificial intelligence and machine learning? Given the excitement around AI today, this question is inevitable. It’s also a bit silly. While some new market entrants may have a vested interest in pushing AI solutions, the fact is that traditional scorecard methods and AI bring different advantages to credit risk modeling — if you know how to use them together. Take, for example, our new credit decisioning solution, FICO Origination Manager Essentials – Small Business. It’s designed to help lenders make faster origination decisions without increasing risk. This new FICO product combines our well-established scorecard technology with AI to build better credit risk models. How FICO Uses AI to Build Better Credit Risk Models As with our other origination products, Origination Manager Essentials includes credit risk models, and these models are segmented — different types of small business customers and different... [Read More]

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Analytics & Optimization Rise of the (IoT) Machines: When Do We Say “Enough”?

Image from Terminator: Rise of the Machines
Mar012017

Make no mistake about it, I am a technology-loving kind of guy. My job is all about helping people to make better business decisions using analytics technology, and I have boundless enthusiasm for speaking with FICO customers, data scientists and students about the power of behavioral analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning. But when it comes to my personal life, I’m a bit of a contrarian. There’s been a lot of news about studies showing how too much smartphone use, or too much time on social media, can have a stressing, depressing effect. So I purposefully limit my phone use and I’m not even on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, et al. (Although I do love using Twitter as part of my work, to connect with followers all over the world!) How technology can rob joy As the Internet of Things (IoT) matures, I feel like a similar trajectory is starting to... [Read More]

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Fraud & Security AI Meets AML: How the Analytics Work

Brain with AML highlihgted in neural pathways
Feb152017

The focus on financial crime, and the money laundering that funds terrorist attacks and other criminal activities, has forced the industry to look for smarter approaches. In the previous posts in this mini-series, TJ Horan noted that AI is the newest hope for compliance, and Frank Holzenthal explored the benefits that AI can bring to compliance officers. Now it’s my turn, and I’m going to explore the AI and machine learning technologies my team has integrated into the FICO TONBELLER Anti-Financial Crime Solutions. We have built on top of the FICO TONBELLER solutions using FICO’s battle-proven and patented artificial intelligence and machine-learning algorithms, which are used in FICO Falcon Fraud Manager to protect about two-thirds of the world’s payment card transactions. Industry experts have begun to realize the significance of analytics in combatting anti-money laundering. For instance, Aite Group LLC in its 2015 report Global AML Vendor Evaluation noted that... [Read More]

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Analytics & Optimization My Keynote World Tour Wrap-Up: “Analytics Will Rock You”

Dr. Scott Zoldi
Jan302017

In my role as FICO’s Chief Analytics Officer, one of the most exciting parts of my job is being asked to speak at industry and customer events all over the world. It’s truly an honor, and a fascinating opportunity to see, hear and appreciate the analytics topics at the top of audience members’ minds. One thing is for sure: analytics are rocking every corner of the world we live in, and audiences across industries are eager to learn more. Analytics rock our assumptions  Predictive Analytics World/New York: I was thrilled to keynote at this event, which focuses on analytics across the broad swath of financial services. I talked about using the FICO fraud data consortium to determine when data shifts can invalidate the models and, more menacing, when these shifts reveal subtle new fraud patterns that can indicate the work of fraudsters and cyber criminals, who know how to go... [Read More]

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Customer Engagement Analytics in Action: Yarra Valley Water and Application Processing

Yarra Valley Water logo
Dec222016

As 2016 draws to a close, I am grateful for the many, many ingenious ways customers use FICO® products to solve business problems. Clearly, FICO World 2016 was a bonanza of an opportunity for me to learn exactly how. Customers traveled to our event, held last April in Washington, DC, from all over the world. The folks from Yarra Valley Water, in Melbourne, Australia, made one of the longest journeys, and I enjoyed hearing the retail water utility’s story at FICO World’s closing panel discussion. Yarra Valley Water uses FICO® Blaze Advisor® decision rules management system and FICO® Decision Management Suite to reduce the time required to the water application process from months to minutes, without adding staff. That’s pretty amazing––watch the video below. An early adopter of automation Yarra Valley Water provides water and sewage service to 1.8 million residents and over 50,000 businesses. In 1995, it worked with... [Read More]

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Analytics & Optimization 4 Analytic Predictions for 2017 – From Killer Devices to AI Hype

Hand holding analytics
Nov302016

In many ways I think 2016 was the year that analytics hit the mainstream. At cocktail parties and in coffee shops, 2016 has been the year that we data scientists suddenly felt a bit like – dare I say it? – rock stars. A quick Google search provides a fascinating data point: “analytics 2015” returned 28.6 million hits “analytics 2016” returned 52.3 million hits Suffice it to say that in 2017, I believe that analytics, and the many domains it influences, will be a non-stop hit machine in terms of generating news headlines and ideas that fascinate us. Here are my predictions: 1. Security/IoT: Is your video cam no longer your friend?  In light of the recent Dyn attack, will 2017 be the year that your IoT device will turn on you? (Think Westworld, Humans, Terminator.) I think the answer is “yes.” In my recent blog, “Real talk: The imminent and... [Read More]

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Fraud & Security It’s Time to Get Real About IoT Security

Fraud locks
Nov042016

The last few years have seen a surge in everyday devices coming online: coffeemakers, refrigerators and beer kegs, to name a very few, each with their very own IP addresses. And those are just within your kitchen. Collectively called the Internet of Things (IoT), these devices are indeed game-changers. But it’s no wonder Gartner informs us that in its Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2016, IoT is currently at the peak of inflated expectations. Manufacturers are more than happy to fulfill consumer demands to connect everything to the Internet. Mirai strikes, once, twice, thrice As it always happens, however, in the rush to win customers, ease of use or time to market trumps safety and security. This was abundantly clear on October 21, when US and European internet traffic was significantly disrupted by a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on Domain Name System provider Dyn. This attack impacted at... [Read More]

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