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Italy’s move to ban ChatGPT over privacy concerns

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Italy has become the first Western nation to obstruct ChatGPT, an intelligent chatbot. The model, developed by US start-up OpenAI and supported by Microsoft, raised privacy issues, according to the Italian data protection authorities.

With “immediate effect,” the agency said it will forbid OpenAI and launch an investigation. Since its debut in November 2022, ChatGPT has been used by millions of users.

With the internet as it was in 2021 as its database, it can replicate different writing styles and respond to queries in a manner that is natural and human-like. It was included to Bing last month after Microsoft invested billions in it.

Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook will all have a version of the technology integrated into them, according to the company.

Concerns have been raised about the possible downsides of artificial intelligence (AI), including the threat it poses to employment and the spread of bias and false information.

Elon Musk and other prominent industry heavyweights called for the suspension of these AI systems earlier this week over concerns that the race to develop them was out of control.

In addition to blocking OpenAI’s chatbot, the Italian watchdog declared that it will look into whether it complies with the General Data Protection Regulation.

The GDPR sets rules for the collection, use, processing, and storage of personal data.

The data breach involved user communications and payment details, the watchdog reported on March 20.

It claimed that there was no legal justification for “the widespread collecting and storage of personal data for the purpose of ‘training’ the platform’s operating algorithms.”

It added that the software “exposes minors to utterly improper replies relative to their degree of development and knowledge” because there was no method to confirm the users’ ages.

Due to the same worries, Bard, Google’s competing artificial intelligence chatbot, is currently only accessible to select persons above the age of 18.

OpenAI was given 20 days by the Italian data protection authorities to respond to the watchdog’s concerns.

under the threat of a $21.7 million ($20 million) punishment or up to 4% of annual earnings.

The Irish Data Protection Commission, which is in charge of upholding EU citizens’ fundamental right to the protection of their personal data, told the BBC that it is pursuing the Italian regulator to learn the reasons behind their decision and “will coordinate with all EU data protection authorities” in relation to the ban.

The UK’s independent data regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office, told the BBC that it would “encourage” breakthroughs in AI but was also prepared to “fight non-compliance” with data protection regulations.

The restriction, according to Dan Morgan of cybersecurity rating service SecurityScorecard, highlights the significance of regulatory compliance for businesses doing business in Europe.

Compliance with rules is a need, not an extra, for businesses. “Businesses must prioritise the protection of personal data and comply with the strict data protection regulations set by the EU.”

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Aaradhya is working as a Sub-Editor at The Vocal News. She enjoys writing about gadgets and automobiles because she is a tech and automotive fanatic. She has done her bachelors in Journalism and Mass communication from Makhanlal Chaturvedi Rashtriya Patrakarita Vishwavidyalaya. "I write to discover what I know."

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