Consumer protection groups from the European Union have urged regulators to investigate the type of artificial intelligence (AI) that runs popular systems like ChatGPT.
Both European and US leaders were called on to use existing laws in order to bring a new legislation to address the harms that this novel technology can cause.
As reported today, 13 watchdog groups have come forward to bring attention to the risks of generative AI that leaves people vulnerable. They wrote to their national consumer, data protection, competition and product safety authorities highlighting a range of concerns surrounding it.
US President Joe Biden was also asked by a transatlantic coalition of consumer groups to take action in safeguarding people from possible harms caused by generative AI.
The groups established their arguments based on a report by the Norwegian Consumer Council outlining the dangers that AI chatbots pose. From providing incorrect medical information to manipulating people and illegally using vast amounts of personal data scraped off the internet, the perils are many.
The move comes ahead of the release of the EU’s comprehensive set of rules for this technology. As the pioneering rules for AI development and deployment, Europe is leading the world in its push to regulate AI. The Union passed the bill on 14 June in the Parliament with 499 votes for, 28 against and 93 abstaining.
However, the rules which were first proposed in 2021 are not expected to take effect for two years.
The consumer groups have also warned that while the EU’s bill addresses some of the concerns, they won’t start applying for several years. This would then “leave consumers unprotected from a technology which is insufficiently regulated in the meantime, and developing at great pace”.
Action against the unethical use of AI has already been taken in other parts of the world like Italy where ChatGPT’s maker OpenAI has been ordered to temporarily stop processing user’s personal information while the country’s watchdogs investigate a possible data breach.
While the US is still pondering over regulations for the AI, France, Spain and Canada have already started looking into OpenAI and ChatGPT.