Mark Nehmer: AI Can Resolve Background Investigation Issues

Mark Nehmer, technical director for the Defense Security Service’s National Background Investigative Services, said that artificial intelligence can significantly help government officials in conducting background investigations, the Department of Defense said Monday.

Nehmer told attendees at a Nextgov event held on March 29 in Arlington Va., that AI can quicken the pace of investigations, resolve understaffing issues, decrease case backlog and mitigate a “Snowden-like event” or instances of government leaks. 

AI’s algorithm and machine learning elements can monitor data flowing through agencies, banks, police records and social media to identify anomalies or suspicious activity, he added. Other potential uses of AI include behavioral analysis and detection of life changes such as debt to identify the need for services like financial assistance.

Nehmer noted that AI will never replace humans in investigative procedures, but platforms using the technology can be leveraged as tools for performing investigations. Work is underway to incorporate AI technology into investigative operations ahead of a potential decision for deployment, he added.

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