Nagoya Univ, Fujitsu develop world's 1st technology to analyze phone conversations
Nagoya University and Fujitsu on Monday announced their successful development of the world’s first technology to analyze phone conversations to automatically detect situations in which one party might “overtrust” the other party. Specifically, this is the kind of situation in which an individual may have a diminished capacity to objectively evaluate an explanation being given by the other party.
By combining this technology for detecting situations of overtrust from voices over the phone with the detection of characteristic keywords, Nagoya University and Fujitsu have also developed basic technology for detecting remittance-soliciting phone phishing scams. Starting this month, a prototype of this technology deployed in mobile phones will undergo verification testing in collaboration with National Police Agency of Japan (the National Police Academy) and The Bank of Nagoya, Ltd.
Research was conducted as part of the “Modeling and Detecting Overtrust from Behavior Signals” research area led by Kazuya Takeda in the research project “Creation of Human-Harmonized Information Technology for Convivial Society” under the direction of Yoichi Tokura, Research Supervisor, in the Core Research of Evolutional Science and Technology (CREST) program of the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), for which a press release was issued in November 2009.
There are limits to human powers of perception and judgment. When overwhelmed with information that may be distressing, some individuals, without knowing it, may have a diminished capacity to objectively evaluate information provided by another party—a situation known as overtrust. In situations of overtrust, there is the risk of believing everything another person is saying, even in cases of remittance-soliciting phone phishing scams, for example. In order to prevent such scams, there is a need to detect such situations and provide appropriate support.
To be able to detect a situation of overtrust that results with distressing information from another party, speech recognition systems have been used with technology that is able to detect when special keywords are included in a conversation. When a person is subject to psychological stress, however, the person’s voice can become indistinct, making methods that rely on keyword detection alone insufficient in terms of detection accuracy. Developing a way to detect situations of overtrust with a high degree of accuracy even under these types of circumstances has, therefore, posed a challenge.
Newly Developed Technology
When a person is subject to psychological stress because the other party is conveying distressing information, situations of overtrust can occur. To address this issue, Nagoya University and Fujitsu developed the world’s first technology that can infer situations of overtrust by detecting changes in voice pitch and level.
In a test using this technology to detect remittance-solicitation phone phishing scams, it was demonstrated that situations of overtrust could be detected with over 90% accuracy, resulting in the impending creation of basic technology for detecting situations of overtrust.
In preventing remittance-solicitation fraud, a serious social problem, effective methods are believed to entail support in detecting remittance-solicitation phone phishing scams and alerting the intended victim as well as alerting the intended victim’s family or other objective third-party member.