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OpenAI to propose remedies to Italian ban on ChatGPT

OpenAI plans to present measures to Italian authorities on Thursday to remedy concerns that led to a ban of its ChatGPT chatbot in Italy last week, the country’s data protection authorities said.

The Italian agency, also known as Garante, accused Microsoft Corp-backed OpenAI of failing to check the age of ChatGPT users and the “absence of any legal basis that justifies the massive collection and storage of personal data” to “train” the chatbot.

OpenAI responded by stopping access to Italian users.

The agency said it has no intention of putting a brake on the development of AI but reiterated the importance of respecting rules aimed at protecting the personal data of Italian and European citizens.

In a video conference late on Wednesday, OpenAI pledged to be more transparent about the way it handles user data and verifies the ages of users, the authority said.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman was among the attendees.

The company said it would send Garante a document regarding measures to respond to its requests.

The data authority said it would evaluate the proposals made by OpenAI.

The ban by Italy has piqued the interest of other privacy regulators in Europe who are studying if harsher measures are needed to rein in chatbots and whether to coordinate such actions.

In February, Garante banned AI chatbot company Replika from using the personal data of Italian users, citing risks to minors and emotionally fragile people. Reuters

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