The Danger of False Positives in Social Media Background Reporting -- And How to Avoid Them

March 11, 2022

In this day and age, more and more industries are in need of comprehensive social media background analysis. Whether it’s to hire new team members, verify a legitimate claim, or further analyze, business leaders are in search of solutions to capture and analyze social media content quickly, cost-effectively, and in a way that scales with their business. As you research options, be aware that social media background reporting that depends solely on artificial intelligence comes with many limitations. 

There are a multitude of businesses that claim to provide precise social media background reports using AI alone, but the reality does not often live up to the expectation. A system that runs on artificial intelligence relies exclusively on algorithms that interpret data based on input and output labels. Sure, these algorithms help you process large chunks of information circulated between multiple online sources in record time. However, each entry within the algorithm lacks contextual analysis, resulting in the risk of false positives. 

When left unchecked, false-positive results lead to inefficiency, serious customer miscommunications, delayed cash flow, and possible legal consequences. Such machine-based errors may occur across every industry that leverages social media reporting and analytics, including legal, private investigation, HR, risk management, and, of course, insurance sectors. 

Understanding Artificial Intelligence False Positives

Artificial intelligence and machine learning continue to influence many data management processes, such as fraud prevention, risk management reporting, and background checks at work. A standard machine learning tool uses preset learning models in recognizing and responding to sensitive data.

While artificial intelligence and machine learning provide the automation for cost-effective data management, they lack the flexible human qualities necessary for identifying subtleties. As a result, machine-based analytics often result in misreported data known as false positives. 

False positives undercut the reliability of social media background reporting, affecting the overall outcome of a case. For example, a client seeking to prove the drinking problem of a partner in a custody battle may get a false-positive result because the AI-produced report discovered pictures that tag other individuals drinking. Similarly, you could overlook the ideal team member for your company because the algorithm turned up outdated industry contributions. 

Essentially, false positives reduce your credibility and compromise your chances of success in future cases. Gradually, these data inaccuracies can be devastating to your professional reputation. Additionally, sifting through these false positives on the back-end requires significant resources, slashing your ROI.

False Positives Across Industries 

Social media background analysis offers industries a deeper understanding of user behaviors and targeted data to support professional decisions. However, inaccurate data leads to confusion, slows progress, and impacts your bottom line. Here’s a glimpse at how false positives negatively impact organizations in a host of industries.

Background Checks

Businesses depend on accurate background checks in selecting the most suitable hires for the long term. Not only could you miss out on a top-notch candidate, but a false-positive report might potentially cause legal repercussions for a company. For example, hiring or rejecting an application based on inaccurate data could violate state and national laws – and result in costly court cases. 

Fraud Detection 

Reports from the Federal Trade Commission show over 1.4 million cases of identity theft in 2020, while credit card fraud rose by over 40% in recent years. But false positives divert time and resources away from addressing actual cases of fraud and erode public trust in an organization's ability to accurately distinguish between fraudulent and legitimate claims. 

Legal/Law Enforcement

Since social media accounts are indicative of user behavior and lifestyles, it is common for law enforcement and legal professionals to rely on social media background analysis as a reliable source during investigations. False-positive reports may cause significant social disruption, obstruction of law enforcement, and other counter-productive outcomes. 

For example, the city of Montgomery’s security department monitored students’ social media accounts with a system that flagged posts containing labeled keywords associated with violence. The algorithm-based system generated a high frequency of false positives, ultimately threatening student privacy and causing discrimination.

Insurance Claims 

The FBI reports that insurance fraud cases cost over $40 billion in losses per year. Some of the most prevalent fraud cases involve worker compensation, healthcare, and auto insurance. Your insurance company should prioritize eliminating false positives in social media analytics reports so that they can focus on swiftly rejecting fraudulent claims and expediting legitimate cases. 

Ultimately, it's inevitable that the use of AI alone will produce false positives. While advanced algorithms may sieve through piles of data with unmatched speed, they lack the capabilities to categorize and sort data in the vast cyber world.  

With accurate intelligence, you can access a unique hybrid solution that combines the speed of automated algorithms with the contextual analysis of human specialists. You can expect relevant and actionable data to suit your organization’s specific needs, drastically expediting cases and increasing your ROI. 

Social Discovery Corp - Powering Reports with Accurate Intelligence

Social Discovery Corp is a trusted provider of social media reporting and data analytics. We deliver verified identities with zero false positives. Our analysts offer diverse experiences from partnering with customers across a range of industries, including the world’s largest third-party administrators (TPA) and Fortune 1000 companies. 

We are the vendor of choice for accurate social media analytics, winning out against competitors for contracts with multi-billion dollar corporations that value accurate intelligence as a reliable source of insight.

Social Discovery Corp's experts understand the limitations of relying solely on big data tools in the sprawling world of social media. Our team leverages extensive industry experience with advanced machine learning algorithms to create relevant, precise, and actionable reports without the risk of false positives. We promise our clients exceptional service, a customized user experience, and accurate intelligence – saving them a tremendous amount of time and money. 

We’d love to prove to you that we are the best solution in the social media background reporting marketplace. Book a demo with Social Discovery Corp today.

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