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FTC takes aim at OpenAI’s ChatGPT with lengthy criminal investigation questionnaire

AI Products and the FTC Investigation

The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a criminal investigative demand (CID) to OpenAI, maker of AI chatbot ChatGPT and related AI products. According to the Washington Post, which published the CID, the FTC is looking into whether OpenAI has used “unfair or deceptive privacy or data security practices” or “unfair or deceptive practices relating to risks of harm to consumer, including reputational harm.” The CID poses 49 questions and requests 17 categories of documents.

The CID also asks what large language models were used in OpenAI products, such as the popular and Olive AI, as well as how the products based on them were trained and how their accuracy of the was guaranteed. The FTC has given OpenAI 14 days to contact an FTC counsel to discuss how it will meet the agency’s demands.

The latest news in the AI field has raised questions about the use of AI in products such as Snapchat, SoundHound, and AI Generators. It is uncertain what the outcome of the FTC’s investigation into OpenAI will be, but it is clear that the agency is taking a close look at the use of AI in the market.

The Implications of AI Technology

The CID also asked about advertising policy, risk assessment, collection and protection of personal information, how the status of “public figure” was determined and how feedback and complaints were handled when Microsoft-backed ChatGPT was introduced on Nov. 30. This powerful new AI technology sent shockwaves through the IT world, causing competitors to scramble to catch up and several countries to announce probes.

In response, 2,600 tech figures – including Elon Musk and Steve Wozniak – signed a letter calling for a moratorium on AI development. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman even spoke before the United States Senate on AI safety. But the company has faced its own issues, including a class action suit filed in Northern California District Court on June 28 for allegedly scraping personal data from the internet without permission, and copyright infringement lawsuits from Mona Awad, Paul Tremblay, Sarah Silverman, and two other authors.

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