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Italy issues a temporary ban on ChatGPT

Posted April. 03, 2023 08:00,   

Updated April. 03, 2023 08:00


The Italian regulator said it is temporally banning access to ChatGPT, an interactive artificial intelligence chatbot. Italy has become the first country in the West to issue a ban on the use of ChatGPT.

According to Reuters on Saturday, the Italian Data Protection Agency said Friday, “We will temporarily block access to ChatGPT service until ChatGPT meets Italy’s privacy protection rules and regulations.” The agency cited possible violation of personal information as the reason for its ban.

The agency has judged that there is no legal ground for ChatGPT to collect and store massive volumes of personal information for its algorithm learning. It warned that if ChatGPT’s developer OpenAI fails to provide a solution within 20 days, it will face fines of up to 20 million Euros, equivalent to 4 percent of ChatGPT’s annual global sales.

ChatGPT has gained immense global popularity since making its debut late last year but, at the same time, is facing intense controversy including ethical issues. One such controversy is where ChatGPT gathers data for its algorithm learning and how it is processing data.

However, Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager of the European Commission tweeted on Saturday, “Whatever technology we use, we should continue to promote freedom and protect rights,” adding the commission will not ban the use of ChatGPT (at the EU level).

Eun-A Cho achim@donga.com