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Generative AI and Business: The Basics and Benefits – Part 1

  • eDiscovery
  • 4 Mins

Is generative AI just a new buzzword or will it play a meaningful role in business? Legal is one industry that should take note, as more organisations are prioritising innovation. Many firms and corporations have already realised the value of technology powered by artificial intelligence (AI) that can detect relevant data and produce better outcomes.

AI tools are regularly used for document review, settlement evaluation, litigation analysis, internal investigations, regulatory compliance, and strategy decisions. This has proven to be transformative and drive better results at a faster pace. Improved outcomes build trust, which has started to slowly turn an industry known for hesitation into one that embraces innovation. But will this pattern ring true with generative AI? Read on to get a deeper understanding on what generative AI is and why the legal industry should care about this trending technology.

The Scoop on Generative AI

Generative AI operates off of deep learning models combining algorithms allowing for quick content creation in response to user input. It has actually been around since the 1960s when the first chatbot emerged, but while this is not considered “new” technology, recent advancements have made these tools more popular. The tech behind this? Transformer machine learning has made it easier to train large datasets leading to more comprehension and robust responses. As a result, new language models have surfaced that can make deeper connections with words and phrases resulting in compelling content.

From the ability to answer questions in a conversational manner to producing detailed images and video, generative AI has caught the attention of many over the past few months. Users are fascinated by how easy it is for ChatGPT to understand a command and respond in seconds – from answering simple questions to writing poems and even passing standardised tests, including the Bar and MCAT. Or how Stable Diffusion can produce a high-quality realistic image just based off a text description. These are just a few examples of trending generative AI tools that are out there.

An important question to ask is how generative AI differs from other tools that legal professionals and their clients are already using. Predictive coding tools such as TAR are widely accepted for identifying key documents and themes early on in a matter and efficiently managing the assessment and review of data. These tools have matured since introduction, as now some can perform sentiment analysis and pattern processing. There are even portable AI models available for a variety of matters. AI is also used in contract management and analytics, privilege review, privacy law compliance, and more. Similar to other types of AI, training is necessary for generative AI to grasp natural language. The difference lies in the underlying algorithms and what the technology outputs. Other AI tools (such as TAR) process data inputted to help classify, detect patterns, and make decisions when reviewing documents. Generative AI creates new content and chat answers based on prompts.

Looking Ahead

How will generative AI integrate into business and legal processes? This is something to be curious about. It is important to be proactive with tech trends, as demand can materialise quickly. Balancing the benefits and risks will help lawyers make informed decisions regarding use cases, remain innovative, and be better equipped to advise clients.

Here are four reasons the legal industry should monitor generative AI developments:

  1. The potential use cases are plentiful. Template creation, eDiscovery, motion drafting, contracts, and research are a few that could trend in the coming years. Innovation is taking the legal industry by storm so evaluating emerging technologies is critical to remain competitive.
  1. Clients will be using this technology and will have questions. Keeping apprised will provide the ability to counsel on usage, policy drafting, and risk management.
  1. Ethical obligations are always heightened for lawyers, which means this needs to be an integral part of risk analysis. Some generative AI can open the door to waive privilege and violate the attorney-client relationship. Consider these factors before inputting confidential information in a generative AI tool.
  1. New tech always raises cyber concerns, as threat actors look for any way to compromise data. If using generative AI, organisations must account for cyber risk and include any relevant information in breach readiness initiatives. Also look out for content created by threat actors for phishing expeditions, as access to a generative AI tool could help create more realistic attempts.

As use cases expand and studies materialise, it will be easier to realise true benefits and perform risk analysis for generative AI in business. In some instances, this could prove to be another tool in the tech toolbox that can improve efficiency and control costs. Check out next week’s blog from the Epiq Angle for part two of this topic that will take a deep dive into ChatGPT – what it is, how it works, and limitations the legal industry must consider.

The contents of this article are intended to convey general information only and not to provide legal advice or opinions.

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