Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai Wants AI to be Regulated – Toolbox
Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai has pitched for wider regulation of AI and a complete ban on facial recognition technology amidst increasing conversations around the ethical use of AI.
Google wants to be known as a force for good in tech. The newly-minted CEO of Alphabet and Google chief executive Sundar Pichai wants greater regulation of artificial intelligence (AI). As policymakers across the globe rally to hold big tech accountable for data privacy breaches and influencing election outcomes, large tech firms now want to be viewed as responsible tech players, working alongside lawmakers to build a unified approach towards AI development, research and ethics framework.
Speaking at a trade event in Brussels, Pichai called for a wider regulation of AI, AP reported. “There is no question in my mind that artificial intelligence needs to be regulated. The question is how best to approach this,” Pichai was quoted in the report. Pichai shed light on the downsides of general purpose facial recognition technology which is dubbed as the new privacy scare. Addressing the think tank, Pichai called for a ban on facial recognition technology, deeming it fraught with risks.
Google is not new to controversies — the search giant worked with US Department of Defense on Project Maven, that leverages AI to improve surveillance capabilities of military drones. The project was shelved amid widespread employee protests but as reported in 2019, Google reneged on its promise. Lately, the search giant was fined $1.7 billion by the EU for choking off competition. 2019 also saw tech firms taking a lead in fighting against the threat of deepfakes.
Looks like in 2020, powerful tech giants want to play a larger role in the governance ecosystem besides being viewed as responsible players. While there are several conversations around AI ethics, tech giants charged with the creation of AI systems can play a bigger role in advocacy and implementing best practices in real-life.