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EU reveals ethics guidelines for artificial intelligence

The European Union has published new ethics guidelines for artificial intelligence (AI) on Monday to prevent it being misused.

According to the new report, AI projects should be transparent, have human oversight and secure and reliable algorithms, as well as being subject to privacy and data protection rules.

Commenting on the news, the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said this is “an important step towards ethical and secure AI” in EU applications.

“We now have a solid foundation based on EU values and following an extensive and constructive engagement from many stakeholders including businesses, academia and civil society”, she explained.

The EU initiative comes at a time when companies are considering whether to put ethical concerns before business interests. In addition, online regulators are currently analysing how tough they should be towards new projects before risking hindering future innovation.

“The ethical dimension of AI is not a luxury feature or an add-on. It is only with trust that our society can fully benefit from technologies,” Commission digital chief Andrus Ansip said in a statement.

However, it has been argued that the move by the EU is also aimed at promoting its own artificial intelligence sector, which has fallen behind developments in China and the United States in recent years.

“Ethical AI is a win-win proposition that can become a competitive advantage for Europe: being a leader of human-centric AI that people can trust,” Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip said.

The Commission also aims to improve cooperation with “like-minded partners” such as Japan, Canada or Singapore and to renew the EU efforts in working with the G7 and G20 groups of leading economies.

Because of this, the updated guidelines follows the Commission’s AI strategy unveiled in April last year, which aimed to reach at least 20 billion euros annually over the next decade of public and private investment in the sector.

The members of the AI expert group who worked on the report will present their work in detail during the third Digital Day in Brussels on 9 April. They will then review the assessment lists for the key requirements and build on the feedback received, proposing next steps in early 2020.

Image via Pixabay.

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