I, Robot

I, Robot

Intelligent avatars cut bank costs.

Banks are exploring artificial intelligence as a way to supplement call centre staff and cut expenses amid the rising cost of capital, escalating labour costs and demanding customers threatening to dent their stellar earnings. Australian start-up MyCyberTwin, which creates three-dimensional computer characters known as avatars bearing artificial intelligence, is holding trials with a number of big banks seeking to clone aspects of their best customer service representatives. It hopes to close agreement with at least one early next year.

Big banks take 10 to 17 million support calls a year at a cost of $7 to $33 a call, of which intelligent avatars are capable of answering 15 per cent, MyCyberTwin chief executive Liesl Capper claims.

Relying on information technology has proved both a blessing and curse for banks, reducing transaction costs by 20-60 per cent but exposing them to relentless attacks by cyber criminals.

Australian security software specialist PC Tools issued warnings this month about a new virus known as "Bankject" hitting internet banking sites.

The virus injects malicious code into the web pages of legitimate internet banking sites to glean passwords, credit card details and ATM pin numbers.

Fairfax Business Media

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Tags avatarcall centre

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