“Given the large swathes of data we currently have access to, there are potential solutions to many deep-seated issues, including corruption,” says Professor Tshilidzi Marwala,the UJ’s Vice-Chancellor and Principal.
In an extreme case, Zero Trust, an anti-corruption AI system in China, has been used to monitor and evaluate the lifestyles of government officials. It has access to more than 150 protected databases in central and local governments and, since 2012, has uncovered 8,721 government employees engaged in embezzlement, abuse of power, misuse of government resources and nepotism.
Zero Trust has come under fire for not explaining the process behind identifying corrupt individuals. And it still heavily relies on humans, which could make much of its work invalid if these people are also unscrupulous. Then, of course, there are the valid concerns around privacy.