FTC Investigates OpenAI and ChatGPT

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The progress and proliferation of AI learning systems with linguistic models are rapidly advancing. In response, the U.S. government is taking proactive measures to ensure that generative AI adheres to consumer privacy protection laws.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has initiated an investigation into OpenAI, the parent company and creator of ChatGPT and DALL-E. The investigation is motivated by concerns that OpenAI may compromise individuals’ personal data and reputations, potentially violating privacy protection laws. This represents a significant legislative challenge regarding the future implementation of AI, occurring at a time when OpenAI and other companies are actively seeking to establish positive relationships with regulators and the government.

The Washington Post reported on the investigation, highlighting that the FTC has issued a 20-page document to OpenAI, requesting records pertaining to the company’s efforts in addressing risks associated with its AI models. This includes a recent incident involving leaked payment and chat histories of ChatGPT users. The FTC is also seeking information on complaints related to false or malicious statements made by OpenAI’s AI regarding individuals, as well as data demonstrating users’ understanding of the product’s potential to generate false or misleading information.

In May, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman voluntarily testified before the U.S. Congress regarding AI applications. Altman also had meetings with President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, reflecting the company’s commitment to engaging with key decision-makers.

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