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Factbox-Governments race to regulate AI tools

Published 10/06/2023, 08:28 AM
Updated 10/06/2023, 09:14 AM
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: AI (Artificial Intelligence) letters are placed on  computer motherboard in this illustration taken June 23, 2023. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration//File Photo

(Reuters) - Rapid advances in artificial intelligence (AI) such as Microsoft-backed OpenAI's ChatGPT are complicating governments' efforts to agree laws governing the use of the technology.

Here are the latest steps national and international governing bodies are taking to regulate AI tools:


* Planning regulations

Australia will make search engines draft new codes to prevent the sharing of child sexual abuse material created by AI and the production of deepfake versions of the same material, the country's internet regulator said on Sept. 8.


* Planning regulations

Britain's data watchdog said on Oct. 10 it had issued Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP)'s Snapchat with a preliminary enforcement notice over a possible failure to properly assess the privacy risks of its generative AI chatbot to users, particularly children.

The country's competition authority set out seven principles on Sept. 18 designed to make developers accountable, prevent Big Tech tying up the tech in their walled platforms, and stop anti-competitive conduct like bundling.

The proposed principles, which come six weeks before Britain hosts a global AI safety summit, will underpin its approach to AI when it assumes new powers in the coming months to oversee digital markets.


* Implemented temporary regulations

China issued a set of temporary measures effective Aug. 15, requiring service providers to submit security assessments and receive clearance before releasing mass-market AI products.


* Planning regulations

EU lawmaker Brando Benifei, who is leading negotiations on the bloc's AI Act, on Sep. 21 urged member countries to compromise in key areas to reach an agreement by the end of the year. Lawmakers are thrashing out details with EU countries before the draft rules can become legislation.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Sept. 13 called for a global panel to assess the risks and benefits of AI.


* Investigating possible breaches

France's privacy watchdog said in April it was investigating complaints about ChatGPT.


* Seeking input on regulations

G7 leaders in May called for the development and adoption of technical standards to keep AI "trustworthy".


* Investigating possible breaches

Italy's data protection authority plans to review AI platforms and hire experts in the field, a top official said in May. ChatGPT was temporarily banned in the country in March, but it was made available again in April.


* Investigating possible breaches

Japan expects to introduce by the end of 2023 regulations that are likely closer to the U.S. attitude than the stringent ones planned in the EU, an official close to deliberations said in July.

The country's privacy watchdog has warned OpenAI not to collect sensitive data without people's permission.


* Investigating possible breaches

Poland's Personal Data Protection Office said on Sept. 21 it was investigating OpenAI over a complaint that ChatGPT breaks EU data protection laws.


* Investigating possible breaches

Spain's data protection agency in April launched a preliminary investigation into potential data breaches by ChatGPT.


* Planning regulations

The U.N. Security Council held its first formal discussion on AI in July, addressing military and non-military applications of AI, which "could have very serious consequences for global peace and security", Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said.

Guterres has also backed a proposal by some AI executives for the creation of an AI watchdog, and announced plans to start work on a high-level AI advisory body by the end of the year.


* Seeking input on regulations

The U.S. Congress held hearings on AI on Sept. 11-13 and an AI forum featuring Meta (NASDAQ:META) CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk.

More than 60 senators took part in the talks, during which Musk called for a U.S. "referee" for AI. Lawmakers said there was universal agreement about the need for government regulation of the technology.

On Sept. 12, the White House said Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE), IBM (NYSE:IBM), Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) and five other firms had signed President Joe Biden's voluntary commitments governing AI, which require steps such as watermarking AI-generated content.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: AI (Artificial Intelligence) letters are placed on  computer motherboard in this illustration taken June 23, 2023. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration//File Photo

A Washington D.C. district judge ruled on Aug. 21 that a work of art created by AI without any human input cannot be copyrighted under U.S. law.

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission opened in July an investigation into OpenAI on claims that it has run afoul of consumer protection laws.

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