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We’ve been customers of Fidelity Investments for many years, and when they rolled out their “MyVoice Verified” program, we thought it was a great step forward. But then came AI.

As AI becomes more and more capable, we should not be surprised to see that our lives are more and more directly affected. Many of these changes will be for the better, increasing productivity and our ability to solve problems more quickly, but there is a darker side that we must recognize.

AI can now be taught to imitate us. There are already websites which will allow you to speak in your normal voice and style to build an AI model of your speech which cannot be distinguished from your own voice.

Think about this for a minute and the implications for privacy and especially security. Like Fidelity’s MyVoice Verified program, many institutions are relying on similar routines to verify callers in an effort to secure our accounts. But these systems are now obsolete – almost overnight!

Anyone who has the opportunity to sample your voice, perhaps through recordings made in your presence without your knowledge, or even through online statements on YouTube or other sites could potentially imitate you on a call to your financial institution. And once they are through security, anything could happen!

What Can You Do?

Notify your bank or financial institution that you would like to be removed from their voice identification security program. That’s what we have done with Fidelity, and they were happy to accommodate us. You may also ask what other programs are under consideration to protect you when calling. If there is no answer or they do not understand the issue, it may be time to consider alternative options!