One Plus One is Greater than Two: The Combined Values of AI and Blockchain

The democratization of AI is shaking up the way we think and work at an unprecedented pace. With tools like ChatGPT from OpenAI, generative AI is now as easy to use as a search engine, yet capable of generating a vast array of text content on demand. Over the last few months, an increasing number of corporations have announced their plans to incorporate generative AI into their businesses in one way or another, trying to keep up with the fast-evolving technology.

In an interview with Bloomberg, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna revealed that the company expects to pause hiring for roles it thinks could be replaced with artificial intelligence in the coming years, particularly those for back-office or non-customer-facing roles, which implies a rough figure of 7,800 jobs. Meanwhile, Allen & Overy, the magic circle law firm, has partnered with a startup backed by ChatGPT creator Open AI to introduce a chatbot named Harvey, intended to help its lawyers with a variety of legal tasks including contract analysis, due diligence and regulatory compliance.

While AI is making work more efficient and cost effective, this new wave of AI systems has reawakened concerns on the technology’s threat to data privacy and security. The AI trend has enabled the rise of fake data and fabricated files, as well as the risk of data leakage and misuse of personal data. Samsung has recently announced a new policy for its employees, banning the use of generative AI tools after learning staff had uploaded sensitive code in conversations with ChatGPT. Other big companies have also expressed concerns about the technology no long after its launch. Some Wall Street banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc. either banned or restricted its use. Italy also barred the use of ChatGPT over privacy fears, though it reversed its stance in recent days.

Fortunately, there is a promising solution to these concerns – blockchain technology – which offers a secure and decentralized platform for data management. By using blockchain, generative AI data can be stored in a tamper-proof and transparent manner, ensuring that it remains secure and private. Data can also be timestamped and hashed, creating a permanent and immutable record of the data’s origin and history. Recent reports estimate that the global blockchain AI market will grow from $230 million in 2021 to almost $1 billion in 2030. As the blockchain AI market expands and matures, new projects aiming to provide better data management and security enter the space.

AI and blockchain technology are two of the most transformative technologies of the 21st century, the synergies of the two may yield ground-breaking results that empower all users, in which they may be particularly beneficial in healthcare and finance, where data sharing is crucial, but privacy and security concerns are paramount. Decentralized infrastructure and blockchain technology can act as an encryption backed guardrails for AI systems. Its use of a distributed ledger reduces many risks associated with centrally stored data. As data is recorded across every node in the network, it becomes difficult for attackers to steal, compromise, or tamper with the data. The code-driven blockchain could also be the perfect environment for AI tools to automatically operate and transact under the rules set by code while leaving a transparent record for humans to oversee.

Taking the field of healthcare as an example, with patient data on blockchain, including electronic health records, data can then be utilized by advanced AI models to analyze and identify recurring patterns, making more accurate diagnoses. Data can also be shared among organizations so that they can work together to improve care while ensuring that each party retains ownership of their data, and that patient privacy is protected.

A case study: Galeon

Galeon, a company working on adapting machine learning in the medical sector by adding the security and transparency provided by the blockchain technology, has been developing the Blockchain Swarm Learning (BSL). The BSL approach aims to develop informed, structured patient records that respect patients’ agreements and build a framework suited for research while ensuring data privacy and security. Operating under a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) on the blockchain, each patient who gives consent for the use of his or her health data to improve research can vote for future non-profit research funded by the DAO.

In conclusion, generative AI technology has immense potential to transform various industries, still, data privacy and security concerns must be addressed to ensure a safe and secure future for all. Blockchain technology provides a promising solution to this challenge, offering secure and decentralized platforms for storing and sharing data. As the use of generative AI technology continues to grow, it is essential that we do not lose sight of its risks while unlocking its full potential.


IBM to Pause Hiring for Jobs That AI Could Do. Bloomberg.

Allen & Overy introduces AI chatbot to lawyers in search of efficiencies. Financial Times.

Samsung Bans Staff’s AI Use After Spotting ChatGPT Data Leak. Bloomberg.

Global Blockchain AI Market Size, Share & Trends, COVID-19 Impact Analysis Report. Spherical Insights.

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This blog covers obser-vations made by our team. It can touch on any subject that we deem relevant for investors in Asean markets.