LEAK: Commission considers facial recognition ban in AI 'white paper'

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The European Commission is considering measures to impose a temporary ban on facial recognition technologies used by both public and private actors, according to a draft white paper on Artificial Intelligence obtained by EURACTIV. If implemented, the plans could throw current AI projects off course in some EU countries, including Germany's wish to roll out automatic facial recognition at 134 railway stations and 14 airports. France also has plans to establish a legal framework permitting video surveillance systems to be embedded with facial recognition technologies. The Commission paper, which gives an insight into proposals for a European approach to Artificial Intelligence, stipulates that a future regulatory framework could "include a time–limited ban on the use of facial recognition technology in public spaces." The document adds that the "use of facial recognition technology by private or public actors in public spaces would be prohibited for a definite period (e.g. More generally, the draft White Paper, the completed version of which the Commission should publish towards the end of February, features five regulatory options for Artificial Intelligence across the bloc. A Voluntary Labelling framework could consist of a legal instrument whereby developers could "chose to comply, on a voluntary basis, with requirements for ethical and trustworthy artificial intelligence." Should compliance in this area be guaranteed, a'label' of ethical or trustworthy artificial intelligence would be granted, with binding conditions. Option two focuses on a specific area of public concern – the use of artificial intelligence by public authorities – as well as the employment of facial recognition technologies generally. In the former area, the paper states that the EU could adopt an approach akin to the stance taken by Canada in its Directive on Automated Decision Making, which sets out minimum standards for government departments that wish to use an Automated Decision System. As for facial recognition, the Commission document highlights provisions from the EU's General Data Protection Regulation, which give citizens "the right not to be subject of a decision based solely on automated processing, including profiling." In the third area which the Commission is currently priming for regulation, legally binding instruments would apply only "to high–risk applications of artificial intelligence.


EU keen to set global rules on artificial intelligence

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After a draft white paper about the EU's position on AI regulation was leaked earlier this month, Google chief Sundar Pichai, on Monday (20 January), warned the bloc about imposing its own regulations and called for an "international alignment" on the core values of the future laws of the sector. However, ahead of what is expected to be the fourth industrial revolution, the European Commission wants to ensure an "appropriate" ethical and legal framework for the development of AI, which promises to boost innovation while making EU citizens' rights a priority. In November, commission chief Ursula von der Leyen pledged to develop AI legislation similar to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), an EU law on privacy. "It is not about damming up the flow of data, it is about making rules that define how to handle data responsibly," she told MEPs back then. "For us, the protection of a person's digital identity is the overriding priority," she added.


Shaping Europe's digital future: What you need to know

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The EU is pursuing a digital strategy that builds on our successful history of technology, innovation and ingenuity, vested in European values, and projecting them onto the international stage. The White Paper on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the European data strategy presented today show that Europe can set global standards on technological development while putting people first. Digital technologies considerably improve our lives, from better access to knowledge and content to how we do business, communicate or buy goods and services. The EU must ensure that the digital transformation works for the benefit of all people, not just a few. Citizens should have the opportunity to flourish, choose freely, engage in society and at the same time feel safe online.


Europe considering tough new rules for artificial intelligence

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Bloomberg--The European Union is considering new legally binding requirements for developers of artificial intelligence in an effort to ensure modern technology is developed and used in an ethical way. The EU's executive arm is set to propose the new rules apply to "high-risk sectors," such as healthcare and transportation, and suggest the bloc updates safety and liability laws, according to a draft of a so-called "white paper" on artificial intelligence obtained by Bloomberg. The European Commission is expected to unveil the paper in mid-February, and the final version is likely to change. The paper is part of the EU's broader effort to catch up to the U.S. and China on advancements in AI, but in a way that promotes European values such as user privacy. While some critics have long argued that stringent data protection laws like the EU's could hinder innovation around AI, EU officials say harmonizing rules across the region will boost development.


Europe Mulls New Tougher Rules for Artificial Intelligence

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The European Union is considering new legally binding requirements for developers of artificial intelligence in an effort to ensure modern technology is developed and used in an ethical way. The EU's executive arm is set to propose the new rules apply to "high-risk sectors," such as healthcare and transport, and suggest the bloc updates safety and liability laws, according to a draft of a so-called "white paper" on artificial intelligence obtained by Bloomberg. The European Commission is due to unveil the paper in mid-February and the final version is likely to change. The paper is part of the EU's broader effort to catch up to the U.S. and China on advancements in AI, but in a way that promotes European values such as user privacy. While some critics have long argued that stringent data protection laws like the EU's could hinder innovation around AI, EU officials say harmonizing rules across the region will boost development.