9 Ways You Can Actually Lose Money With ChatGPT

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ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot, made its debut less than a year ago, and it’s already changed the way some people live from day to day. It can compose emails, translate text from another language, plan vacations or even help you buy real estate. In its more sophisticated functions, ChatGPT can generate program code.

ChatGPT’s creator, OpenAI, reported last fall that in its first five days of availability, more than a million people used it. Today, many of its users are people looking for help managing their finances or businesses that are eager to harness the technology’s power to increase efficiency.

If you’re not a careful though, it could wind up costing you money. According to experts, you actually could lose money through ChatGPT in these nine ways.

Misinterpreted Advice

The information you learn from ChatGPT shouldn’t be followed without independent verification, said Camille Fortuno, a B2B marketing research specialist who shares data-driven insights in her work with UpCity.

“Depending on the context and your specific circumstances, the advice given by ChatGPT may not always be accurate or suitable for your situation, potentially leading to financial losses if followed blindly,” Fortuno said. “While ChatGPT can provide information and suggestions, it’s important to exercise caution and not rely solely on its responses for financial decisions.”

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Costly Input Mistakes

As infallible and easy to use as AI might seem to be, it requires a skilled hand to feed it data properly, said Richard Gardner, the CEO of advanced technology company Modulus.

“ChatGPT doesn’t have ideas of its own,” he said. “As a large language model, it only responds to prompts. However, it isn’t equipped with up-to-date information or the ability to predict future trends. It isn’t a Magic Eight Ball … users who don’t understand the limitations of ChatGPT … could input a prompt improperly, which could then create a response which is either a complete hallucination or one which is easily misinterpreted. Relying on that information to make investments could easily lead to financial losses.”

Market Volatility

Fortuno agreed that ChatGPT isn’t the best at making predictions.

“ChatGPT’s responses are based on historical data and patterns, but it cannot predict future market behavior accurately,” she said. “Financial markets can be highly unpredictable and subject to various factors such as economic conditions, geopolitical events and investor sentiment. Relying solely on ChatGPT’s predictions or investment advice could result in losses if the market behaves differently than expected.”

Inaccurate Information

“If you base financial decisions on such inaccurate information without verifying it independently, it could lead to financial losses,” Fortuno said. “ChatGPT might provide responses that are factually incorrect or outdated.

“If you rely on such information without verifying it independently, it could lead to financial losses. ChatGPT may sometimes misunderstand user input or provide incorrect information unintentionally. Always double-check information and seek multiple sources when making important financial decisions.”

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Lack of Context, Emotion

“The advice or suggestions provided by ChatGPT may not align with your individual circumstances, potentially leading to unfavorable outcomes,” Fortuno said. “ChatGPT may not fully understand the specific context of your financial situation, goals or risk tolerance.”

It also can’t understand personal feelings when it comes to money, she said.

“Human emotions and biases can significantly impact financial choices, and ignoring these factors while relying on ChatGPT may lead to poor decisions and potential financial losses. It cannot fully account for the emotional and psychological aspects of investing or financial decision-making. ChatGPT does not have emotions or subjective experiences.”

Overreliance and Complacency

AI should be just one component of the decision-making process for businesses, said Jon Mack, the managing director of cyber and technology managed service provider Swiftcomm.

“Relying too heavily on AI without exploring other innovative tools and solutions could limit a company’s growth and potentially lead to missed opportunities,” Mack said.

“AI models like ChatGPT are a tool meant to assist, not to replace human judgment. It should always be used with a good understanding of its capabilities and limitations and complemented by a strong human team. Ensuring a balance between AI and human expertise is key to financial success.”

Phishing or Scams

Even AI is vulnerable to scams, apparently.

“Scammers may create fraudulent platforms posing as ChatGPT to gather sensitive information or deceive users into financial scams,” Fortuno said. “Be cautious of interacting with unofficial or unverified versions of ChatGPT. Avoid sharing personal or financial details with any unofficial ChatGPT instances.”

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Maintenance and Training

Not using the most up-to-date version of ChatGPT can cause your results to be less effective.

“AI models need constant updates and tuning to stay efficient and effective,” Mack said. “If these tasks are neglected, the technology may not perform as expected, leading to less-than-ideal outcomes.”

User Costs

ChatGPT isn’t free, and businesses need to consider the costs of use, said Eldad Postan-Koren, the co-founder and CEO of WINN.AI.

“A lot of companies now build their use case or product on top of ChatGPT. And they have to pay attention that the money they get from their customers has plenty of margin on top of what they will pay [for] ChatGPT to do all the processing,” he said.

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