White House Unveils Initiatives to Reduce Risks of AI

The announcements build on earlier efforts by the administration to place guardrails on A.I. Last year, the White House released what it called a blueprint for an A.I. bill of rights, which said that automated systems should protect users’ data privacy, shield them from discriminatory outcomes and make clear why certain actions were taken. In January, the Commerce Department also released a framework for reducing risk in A.I. development, which had been in the works for years.

The introduction of chatbots like ChatGPT and Google’s Bard has put huge pressure on governments to act. The European Union, which had already been negotiating regulations to A.I., has faced new demands to regulate a broader swath of A.I., instead of just systems seen as inherently high risk.

In the United States, members of Congress, including Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the majority leader, have moved to draft or propose legislation to regulate A.I. But concrete steps to rein in the technology in the country may be more likely to come first from law enforcement agencies in Washington.

A group of government agencies pledged in April to “monitor the development and use of automated systems and promote responsible innovation,” while punishing violations of the law committed using the technology.

In a guest essay in The Times on Wednesday, Lina Khan, the chair of the Federal Trade Commission, said the nation was at a “key decision point” with A.I. She likened the technology’s recent developments to the birth of tech giants like Google and Facebook, and she warned that, without proper regulation, the technology could entrench the power of the biggest tech companies and give scammers a potent tool.

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