US Announces ‘Most Significant Global Action Yet’ Concerning AI Safety

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The White House has announced what it is calling “the most significant actions ever taken by any government to advance the field of AI safety.” An executive order from President Joe Biden requires Artificial Intelligence (AI) developers to share safety results with the US government. This places the US at the center of the global debate on AI governance.

The UK government is holding a summit on AI safety, hosted by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, this week. The two-day meeting begins on 1 November at Bletchley Park. It has been prompted by concerns that the rapid advance of AI systems could lead to problems such as the development of more deadly bio-weapons and more paralysing cyber-attacks.

Announcing the safety measures, Mr Biden vowed to “harness the power of AI while keeping Americans safe.” On Monday, Mr Biden told reporters and tech workers at the White House: “As artificial intelligence expands the boundary of human possibility, and tests the bounds of human understanding, this landmark executive order is a testament to what we stand for.

“Safety, security, trust, openness, American leadership, and the undeniable rights endowed by our creator that no creation can take away.”

The US measures include:

• Creating new safety and security standards for AI, including measures that require AI companies to share safety test results with the federal government.

• Protecting consumer privacy, by creating guidelines that agencies can use to evaluate privacy techniques used in AI.

• Helping to stop AI algorithms discrimination and creating best practices on the appropriate role of AI in the justice system.

• Creating a program to evaluate potentially harmful AI-related healthcare practices and creating resources on how educators can responsibly use AI tools.

• Working with international partners to implement AI standards around the world.

The Biden administration is also taking steps to beef up its AI workforce. From Monday, workers with AI expertise can find relevant openings in the federal government on AI.gov.

US Vice-President Kamala Harris, and top executives from the US tech giants are arriving in the UK this week to discuss AI safety at the UK government’s AI Summit, which it has billed as a “world first.” The summit will focus on growing fears about the implications of so-called frontier AI.

President of the EU Commission Ursula von der Leyen, and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres will also attend. The UK is determined to position itself as a global leader in trying to minimise the risks posed by this powerful technology.

On the other hand, the EU is in the process of passing an AI act. China has already devised a number of strict AI rules, and now the US has issued this order. On top of that, according to reports, the Group of Seven (G7) industrial countries is reportedly agreeing on a code of conduct for companies developing advanced AI systems. All that activity raises the question of how much will actually be left up for discussion at Bletchley Park this week.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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