Digital finance has the potential to reach over 1.6 billion new retail customers in emerging economies and to increase the volume of loans extended to individuals and businesses by $2.1 trillion. This is just one of the many ways in which Africa, as a continent, has benefited greatly from cell and mobile banking in the last decade. From the introduction of the M-Pesa platform to other various blockchain technologies that have disrupted the African financial services industry, technology is changing the way businesses operate and deliver products to consumers in many sectors. Whereas tasks were once handled with paper money, large computers and featured the need for human interaction, they are now being completed entirely on digital interfaces with smart technology.

AI Changing Customer Service in Banking

Financial technology startups are disrupting the industry through the way in which they can provide customer service on a more accurate and efficient level. While outstanding customer service is still one of the most important things when dealing with someone’s finances, this type of service doesn’t require an actual human anymore. Chatbots have quickly become the norm for customers to interact with, which not only cuts down on the amount of time and money a company has to invest in their employees, it allows them to provide their customers with a more accurate, personalized experience through the use of smart learning algorithms. A chatbot will, over time, possess the ability to reduce human errors and increase the overall efficiency of various processes.

Fraud Investigations Becoming More Effective

While investigation into fraud has always included the need for machines and certain types of technology, artificial intelligence has progressed so much that it supersedes the capacities of the people designing it. Now, companies are starting to be able to detect fraud and identity theft before it even happens. To do this, machine learning algorithms are able to track the history of certain victims or likely victims and calculate as well as predict the possibility of fraud based on previous patterns. A machine’s ability to do this is much faster than any human or team of humans could, which means banks can cut down on the number of people they need to hire and be more efficient in the protection they provide to owners of various different types of accounts.

Increase in Blockchain Trading

As Bitcoin and other digital currencies become more popular around the world, Blockchain technology will continue to gain momentum as it holds more promise than other digital payments that currently exist in Africa. Blockchain allows for safe and secure trading of almost anything, from money, ideas, copyrights, or royalty fees, while eliminating the middleman needed to facilitate or manage the transaction. This limited security risk that Blockchain provides makes it an ideal manner in which to conduct various types of negotiations, investments and payments across international borders and bank lines.

Technology Changing Banking for the Better

Across Africa, there are hundreds of companies that are leveraging digital technologies in order to provide or improve upon their financial services. From chatbots that can deliver a better, more streamlined, customer experience, to a more secure banking experience across the board, technology is disrupting and improving the way in which millions of Africans can access their money as well as save and spend it.

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