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Italy becomes first western nation to ban ChatGPT citing privacy concerns

Italy becomes first western nation to ban ChatGPT citing privacy concerns
Italy becomes first western nation to ban ChatGPT citing privacy concerns

OpenAI’s chatbot ChatGPT has reportedly been disabled in Italy at the recommendation of the nation’s data protection regulator, the Garante. The data protection authority has cited privacy concerns associated with the Microsoft-backed chatbot as the reason for the ban.

According to the Garante, ChatGPT would be banned with immediate effect. Furthermore, an investigation will be conducted to determine if the model complies with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), which governs the way personal data is processed, used, and stored. OpenAI, meanwhile, maintains that it has complied with privacy laws.

In March, it was revealed that the app had experienced a data breach that involved the payment information and conversations of users. As per the Italian data-protection regulator, there is no legal basis to validate the collection and storage of large volumes of personal data for use in the training of algorithms required to operate the platform. Furthermore, the inability to verify user age on the app would expose minors to answers unsuitable for their levels of awareness and development.

Garante reportedly granted OpenAI 20 days to find a solution that would address these concerns, under a fine of USD 21.7 million or nearly 4% of its yearly revenue.

Dan Morgan from SecurityScorecard, a cybersecurity rating provider, has claimed that the ban highlights the importance of regulatory compliance for entities in Europe. According to Morgan, it is essential that businesses prioritize the security of users’ data and comply with the strict data protection regulations set by authorities in the EU.

Concerns regarding the perceived risks of AI (artificial intelligence), including the threat it poses to jobs, as well as the rampant spread of bias and misinformation, are growing. Many key figures in the technology domain, such as Elon Musk, have expressed doubt about the use of these AI systems and have called for them to be suspended.

ChatGPT has already been banned in several nations worldwide, including North Korea, Iran, Russia, and China.

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