KPMG Study: Consumers Optimistic About Benefits of Generative AI As Technology Becomes More Pervasive

--Consumers feel that GenAI will be most helpful for improving health, cybersecurity, and sustainability

--Consumers see businesses playing a vital role in ensuring GenAI is developed and used ethically 

 

NEW YORK, Jan. 18 – As consumers increasingly use generative AI (GenAI) in their personal and professional lives, they are optimistic about its potential positive impact on society and believe that the benefits of the technology outweigh the risks they see, according to a new KPMG survey. Consumers also see businesses playing a vital role in ensuring the responsible and ethical use of the technology. 

The 2024 KPMG Generative AI Consumer Trust Survey captured insights from 1,000 college-educated and informed consumers across the United States on their perceptions and trustworthiness of GenAI. Key perspectives expressed by the respondents are highlighted below.

GenAI is going mainstream and consumers believe the benefits outweigh the risks.

  • 42% of consumers believe GenAI has a significant impact on their personal lives now. 60% indicated it will have a significant impact on their personal lives in two years. 
  • 58% of consumers said GenAI has a significant impact on their professional lives now, and 77% believe it will have a significant impact on their professional lives in two years. 
  • 51% of U.S. consumers are “extremely or very” excited about GenAI. 
  • According to respondents, GenAI will be helpful in addressing a range of issues, including improving mental and physical health (57%), cybersecurity (55%) and sustainability (50%). 
  • 70% believe the benefits of GenAI outweigh the risks associated with the technology. 
  • Consumers trust the use of GenAI across various applications, with the highest levels of trust associated with using it for: education resource (56%), personalized recommendations (54%), customer service (50%) and business uses (50%). 

Consumers have concerns about the technology, but job displacement and bias are not top concerns. 

  • When asked to identify their concerns regarding the development and use of GenAI, respondents cited fake news and fake content (67%); scams (65%); privacy (63%); cybersecurity (63%); and false information (62%). Job displacement (51%) and bias (50%) were lesser concerns.
  • Perceptions of current federal regulations around the development and use of GenAI differ by generation. 60% of Gen Z and Millennials believe current regulations are “about right” or “too much,” while 36% of Gen X and 15% of Boomers and the Silent Generation believe the same. 

Businesses have an opportunity to address the expectation gap around GenAI’s ethical use.

  • 74% of consumers trust organizations that increasingly use GenAI in their day-to-day operations.
  • Consumers said all types of organizations are responsible for ensuring that GenAI is developed and used ethically, with tech companies that develop GenAI technologies (83%) and tech companies that utilize GenAI in applications (83%) cited most frequently. 
  • When asked how much they trust different types of organizations to ensure that GenAI is developed and used ethically, academic institutions and think tanks (54%), tech companies that develop GenAI technologies (48%) and organizations that utilize GenAI in their business (48%) were rated most favorably.
  • When considering the effectiveness of business practices to help ensure the ethical use of GenAI within a company or organization, respondents felt the following would be effective:
    • ongoing education and training for employees (87%); 
    • regular internal audits to assess GenAI systems for biases, fairness and security vulnerabilities (86%); 
    • collaboration with regulatory bodies and industry peers to establish industry standards and best practices (85%);
    • third-party review of a company’s oversight of its use of GenAI (84%); 
    • human oversight in GenAI process especially in critical decision-making areas (82%); 
    • prioritizing data privacy using robust data anonymization techniques (81%); 
    • using watermarks or disclosures to indicate content was made with the assistance of GenAI (81%); and, 
    • establishing clear ethical frameworks for GenAI use within an organization (80%). 

Leadership perspectives

Steve Chase, Vice Chair of AI and Digital Innovation, said, “While our report found that younger generations are more accepting of AI as consumers, everyone expects responsible and ethical use. Companies can build customer trust while deploying this technology by making a public commitment, built on a robust internal program, on how they will build, deploy and use AI. Leading companies will go even further and include transparency reporting into existing communications, including providing Trusted AI progress updates in annual corporate impact reports.” 

Bryan McGowan, KPMG’s US Trusted AI Leader, said, "Companies are looking to act fast to capture the benefits GenAI has to offer, but many face obstacles such as regulatory uncertainty, privacy and data quality. A Trusted AI program removes barriers, helps mitigate risks and enables companies to accelerate adoption responsibly. Leading programs include practices that build consumer trust, such as ongoing education, assessments, collaboration with regulators, and human oversight."

Tonya Robinson, Vice Chair and General Counsel - Legal, Regulatory and Compliance said: “As the regulatory environment evolves, the onus is on companies that design, build and deploy AI to ensure it is done ethically and responsibly. A Trusted AI program must go beyond academic theory. It must, in practice, be operationalized to provide for oversight and accountability, while also unleashing innovation.”

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About KPMG LLP

KPMG LLP is the U.S. firm of the KPMG global organization of independent professional services firms providing audit, tax and advisory services. The KPMG global organization operates in 143 countries and territories and has more than 273,000 people working in member firms around the world. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.

KPMG is widely recognized for being a great place to work and build a career. Our people share a sense of purpose in the work we do, and a strong commitment to community service, inclusion and diversity and eradicating childhood illiteracy. Learn more at www.kpmg.com/us.

Additional Resources

KPMG Generative AI Consumer Trust Survey
Click to download and access the full report findings.

Media Contacts

Melanie Malluk Batley

Melanie Malluk Batley

Associate Director, Corporate Communications, KPMG US

+1 201-307-8217

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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