US and EU agree to collaborate on improving lives with AI

The US and EU have signed a landmark agreement to explore how AI can be used to improve lives.

The US Department of State and EU Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT) simultaneously held a virtual signing ceremony of the agreement in Washington and Brussels.

Roberto Viola, Director General of DG CONNECT, signed the 'Administrative Arrangement on Artificial Intelligence for the Public Good' on behalf of the...

Italy’s facial recognition ban exempts law enforcement

Italy has banned the use of facial recognition, except for law enforcement purposes.

On Monday, the country’s Data Protection Authority (Garante per la protezione dei dati personali) issued official stays to two municipalities – the southern Italian city of Lecce and the Tuscan city of Arezzo – over their experiments with biometrics technologies.

The agency banned facial recognition systems using biometric data until a specific law governing its use is...

MEPs back AI mass surveillance ban for the EU

MEPs from the European Parliament have adopted a resolution in favour of banning AI-powered mass surveillance and facial recognition in public spaces.

With a 71 vote majority, MEPs sided with Petar Vitanov’s report that argued AI must not be allowed to encroach on fundamental rights.

An S&D party member, Vitanov pointed out that AI has not yet proven to be a wholly reliable tool on its own.

He cited examples of individuals being denied social benefits...

EU regulation sets fines of €20M or up to 4% of turnover for AI misuse

A leaked draft of EU regulation around the use of AI sets hefty fines of up to €20 million or four percent of global turnover (whichever is greater.)

The regulation (PDF) was first reported by Politico and is expected to be announced next week on April 21st.

In the draft, the legislation’s authors wrote:

“Some of the uses and applications of artificial intelligence may generate risks and cause harm to interests and rights that are protected by Union law....

Macron wants Europeans to relax about data or be left behind in AI

Emmanuel Macron, President of France, is calling for Europeans to relax about the use of their data by AI companies to prevent those operating in the region falling behind their international counterparts. Citizens are increasingly concerned about their use of data, especially following the ongoing investigations into Facebook and Cambridge Analytica. AI companies, however, rely on the bulk collection of data for training machine learning models. Macron wants to ensure France is a leader...

Editorial: Facebook excluding the EU from AI advancement heralds a trend

EU regulations have forced Facebook to exclude citizens of member states from its new AI-powered suicide prevention tool, and it heralds a worrying trend. Facebook’s new suicide prevention tool aims to use pattern recognition to detect posts or live videos where someone might be expressing thoughts of suicide, and to help respond to reports faster. In a post announcing the feature, Facebook wrote: “We are starting to roll out artificial intelligence outside the US to help identify...