AI Whitewashing is a real thing, how to avoid just getting an old algorithm simply rebranded

Jun 25, 2023

Understanding AI Whitewashing

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become an integral part of our lives, transforming industries and businesses across the globe. However, with the rapid advancements in AI, there is a growing concern about a phenomenon called "AI Whitewashing." This term refers to the practice of rebranding old algorithms and presenting them as new and innovative AI solutions. In this blog post, we will discuss the implications of AI Whitewashing, how it can affect businesses, and how to avoid falling for rebranded algorithms.

AI whitewashing

Implications of AI Whitewashing

AI Whitewashing can have serious consequences for businesses that invest in AI technologies. By purchasing and implementing rebranded algorithms, companies risk wasting valuable resources on outdated and inefficient solutions. This can lead to suboptimal decision-making, reduced competitiveness, and even reputational damage. Moreover, AI Whitewashing can hinder the overall progress of AI research and development, as it diverts attention and resources away from genuine innovation.

Identifying Rebranded Algorithms

Check the Algorithm's History

One way to avoid AI Whitewashing is to thoroughly research the history of the algorithm in question. Look for information on its original release date, the developers behind it, and any previous iterations. If the algorithm has a long history and the recent "innovations" seem minor or cosmetic, it might be a case of rebranding.

algorithm research

Evaluate the Algorithm's Performance

Another important step is to critically evaluate the performance of the algorithm. If the algorithm is being marketed as a new and improved solution, it should demonstrate significant advancements in terms of accuracy, speed, and efficiency. Compare the algorithm's performance with other similar solutions in the market, and look for independent reviews and benchmark tests. If the algorithm fails to outperform its competitors, it may not be as innovative as it claims.

Assess the Company's Reputation

Before investing in any AI solution, it is crucial to assess the reputation of the company offering the product. Look for reviews and testimonials from other customers to gauge their satisfaction with the company's products and services. Additionally, check if the company has a history of AI Whitewashing or other unethical practices. A reputable company will be transparent about its products and their development process.

company reputation

Preventing AI Whitewashing

As a business looking to adopt AI technologies, it is essential to take preventive measures against AI Whitewashing. Here are some steps you can take:

  1. Invest in AI education and training for your team to better understand the technology and its capabilities.
  2. Develop a clear understanding of your business needs and objectives before investing in AI solutions.
  3. Consult with AI experts and professionals to help you evaluate and select the right AI technologies for your business.
  4. Stay informed about the latest AI research and developments to ensure that you are aware of the most advanced and effective solutions available.


AI Whitewashing is a real concern in the rapidly evolving world of AI technology. By being vigilant, conducting thorough research, and taking preventive measures, businesses can avoid falling for rebranded algorithms and ensure that they invest in truly innovative and effective AI solutions. Remember, the success of your AI implementation depends on the quality and performance of the technology you choose, so it's essential to make informed decisions to maximize the benefits of AI for your business.