Hit The Gas On AIaaS: Benefits Often Outweigh Legal Challenges


AI (artificial intelligence) concept.

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AI-as-a-Service (AaaS) offers companies of all sizes cost-effectiveness and convenience through subscription-based AI tools that can be quickly and easily deployed. Many organizations are now considering AIaaS for their AI needs. 

Lawyers must be ready to stomp on the gas pedal to encourage legal and business teams to use AIaaS. Or be ready to apply firm and steady pressure to the pedal to stay up to speed with competitors who already use AI. 

Okay, if nothing else, at least tap the gas to move forward with caution! 

Let’s look at how AIaaS works and the benefits and legal challenges accompanying its use to learn why.

Benefits Abound For AI-as-a-Service Users

Organizations, legal departments, and law firms stand to benefit from AIaaS. It is often ideal for those who require AI but lack the means to build their own solutions. 

Vendors provide the infrastructure, expertise, analytics, and continuous support for AI solutions. Users gain data-driven, AI-powered insights (usually via subscription pricing) without the large costs of managing an in-house AI solution.

This setup empowers companies of all sizes to scale AI solutions quickly and cost-effectively. They can focus on their core business while leveraging the power of AI to drive growth, profitability, and innovation. 

Legal Risks And Challenges Of AI-as-a-Service

The potential risks of using third-party AI services can include data privacy and security issues and other potential liabilities. “Musts” include:

  • Ensure internal stakeholders understand vendor terms and conditions, along with the scope of services, usage limits, and roles and duties.
  • Research the still-emerging legal issues associated with using AI. For example, an AI provider’s contractual liabilities can depend on whether it’s considered a “good” or “service” in the applicable jurisdiction. That determination can then affect tort liability.
  • Track what data gets sent to the AIaaS provider and know who can access it, how it is stored, and the measures that protect it. We see consistently more stringent controls on data collection and sharing. 

Knowing when to use AIaaS tools and which providers to collaborate with is a matter of understanding organizational needs and how specific AI capabilities can help meet them.

When starting, don’t hesitate to ask a potential AIaaS provider to explain how they help you manage legal risks. If they can’t give you a clear picture, put them in your rear-view mirror. Then stomp, press, or tap that gas pedal to help your firm and your clients take advantage of AI’s speed, power, and efficiency.

Olga MackOlga V. Mack is the VP at LexisNexis and CEO of Parley Pro, a next-generation contract management company that has pioneered online negotiation technology. Olga embraces legal innovation and had dedicated her career to improving and shaping the future of law. She is convinced that the legal profession will emerge even stronger, more resilient, and more inclusive than before by embracing technology. Olga is also an award-winning general counsel, operations professional, startup advisor, public speaker, adjunct professor, and entrepreneur. She founded the Women Serve on Boards movement that advocates for women to participate on corporate boards of Fortune 500 companies. She authored Get on Board: Earning Your Ticket to a Corporate Board SeatFundamentals of Smart Contract Security, and  Blockchain Value: Transforming Business Models, Society, and Communities. She is working on Visual IQ for Lawyers, her next book (ABA 2023). You can follow Olga on Twitter @olgavmack.

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