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Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Google CEO Warns of Artificial Intelligence Danger


Mon 20 Jan 2020 | 07:15 PM
Yassmine Elsayed

This morning, Google chief executive warned of "negative consequences" brought by technology as he called for a balanced approach to regulating artificial intelligence.

Speaking before a European audience, Sundar Pichai said: "There is no question in my mind that artificial intelligence needs to be regulated. The question is how best to approach this," Pichai said, according to a transcript of his speech at a Brussel-based think tank.

He noted that there's an important role for governments to play and that as the European Union and the U.S. start drawing up their own approaches to regulation, "international alignment" of any eventual rules will be critical.

"Sensible regulation must also take a proportionate approach, balancing potential harms with social opportunities," he said, adding that it could incorporate existing standards like Europe's tough General Data Protection Regulation rather than starting from scratch.

While it promises big benefits, he raised concerns about potential downsides of artificial intelligence, citing as one example its role in facial recognition technology, which can be used to find missing people but also for "nefarious reasons" which he didn't specify.

Pichai's comments come as lawmakers and governments are seriously considering setting limits on how artificial intelligence is used.

Last year, EU's powerful competition regulator, Margrethe Vestager has hit the Silicon Valley giant with multibillion-dollar fines for allegedly abusing its market dominance to choke off competition.

According to AP, Vestager, who was reappointed for a second term last autumn with expanded powers over digital technology policies, has now set her sights on artificial intelligence, and is drawing up rules on its ethical use.

Vestager and the EU have been the among the more aggressive regulators of big tech firms, an approach U.S. authorities have picked up with investigations into the dominance of companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon.