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  • Kyle Chua

Italian Minister Criticises Country’s Ban of ChatGPT

Not everyone from the Italian government agrees with the decision to temporarily ban viral artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot ChatGPT in the country.

Credit: AFP

According to Reuters, the country's Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini is criticising the decision, calling the ban excessive. "I find the decision of the Privacy Watchdog that forced #ChatGPT to prevent access from Italy disproportionate," he wrote on Instagram.


Italy’s Data Protection Authority, an independent agency that was set up to "protect fundamental rights and freedoms in connection with the processing of personal data", last week banned ChatGPT, rendering it temporarily inaccessible in the country. The agency cited privacy concerns and violations for the move, specifically how the AI tool failed to verify if users were aged 13 or above.


Salvini also called the ban "hypocritical", noting how privacy concerns aren't unique to ChatGPT and concern almost every online service. He said the move could have consequences on some businesses and stifle innovation in the country as he calls for its rapid restoration.


"Every technological revolution brings great changes, risks and opportunities," he added. "It is right to control and regulate through an international cooperation between regulators and legislators, but it cannot be blocked."

Italy Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini. Credit: Reuters

Italy's Data Protection Authority declined to comment on Salvini's statement.


ChatGPT is a natural language processing tool that answers prompts or questions in a conversation style. It's operated by OpenAI, a California-based AI startup that's backed by software giant Microsoft.


OpenAI said it's working to reduce the reliance of personal data in training and improving its AI systems like ChatGPT. "We look forward to working closely with (the Italian data agency) and educating them on how our systems are built and used," it said.


The Italian Data Protection Authority is giving OpenAI 20 days to respond to its concerns, and said the company could face a nearly US$22 million fine if it fails to do so.

 
  • Italy's Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini is criticising the ban of ChatGPT in the country, calling it excessive.

  • The viral chatbot was banned last week by regulators, citing privacy concerns and violations, specifically how the AI tool failed to verify if users were aged 13 or above.

  • The Italian Data Protection Authority is giving OpenAI 20 days to respond to its concerns, and said the company could face a nearly US$22 million fine if it fails to do so.

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