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The Dark Side Of Artificial Intelligence

Zopper Team Basics of Insurance March 6th, 2024
Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has undeniably revolutionised industries, offering unparalleled efficiency, convenience, and innovation. From personalised recommendations to autonomous vehicles, AI has seamlessly integrated into our daily lives. However, amidst its brilliance lies a dark underbelly that warrants acknowledgement and scrutiny. Here’s an example - not so long ago a popular Indian actress and an iconic American singer faced humiliation at the hands of a cybercriminal when deep fake vulgar images of them surfaced on social media. This form of digital sexual violence is sadly only one example of the threats posed by Artificial Intelligence. 

Surfshark, a leading cybersecurity firm reveals India as the 5th most breached country globally in 2023 and approximates 10 Indian user accounts being leaked every minute throughout the year.

Let’s delve into the shadows of AI, exploring its ethical dilemmas, biases, privacy invasions, and potential threats.

Privacy - what’s that?

In January 2023, hackers furrowed their way into Global Affairs Canada’s secure VPN and stole sensitive personal information of users and employees. In the same year in November, a major American multinational technology corporation was victimised by a ‘password spray attack’, where hackers walked away with documents and emails from senior leadership and the legal department. The list of such attacks continues. Privacy has become a flimsy term in today’s digital world. As AI algorithms sift through vast amounts of data to generate insights and predictions, individuals' privacy is increasingly compromised. From facial recognition technology to personalised advertising, AI-powered systems continually collect and analyse personal information without adequate consent or transparency. This erosion of privacy raises concerns about surveillance, data breaches, and the misuse of sensitive information.

Raising AI bias and ethical concerns

One of the foremost concerns surrounding AI is its ethical implications. As AI systems become increasingly sophisticated, questions arise regarding their moral agency and emotionless decision-making capabilities. The notion of AI autonomously making choices raises ethical dilemmas, particularly in scenarios where human lives are at stake, such as in autonomous vehicles or medical diagnosis. Data is intrinsic to AI. Despite efforts to create unbiased algorithms, AI often reflects the biases present in its training data. This can perpetuate societal inequalities, particularly in sensitive areas like criminal justice, hiring processes, and financial lending.

“We must address, individually and collectively, moral and ethical issues raised by cutting-edge research in artificial intelligence and biotechnology, which will enable significant life extension, designer babies, and memory extraction.” - Klaus Schwab, Economist and Founder of the World Economic Forum

Need for a regulatory framework

Speculations about superintelligent AI surpassing human intelligence and acting against human interests have permeated popular discourse. While such scenarios remain largely speculative, they underscore the need for robust ethical frameworks and regulatory measures to ensure AI remains aligned with human values and interests. Sensitive to AI’s sweeping impact on Indian society, the Indian government tasked its public policy arm - NITI Aayog, to establish a framework for the development and use of Artificial Intelligence. As per the reports, the draft regulatory framework is expected by July 2024. Recently, the Indian government implemented the Digital Personal Data Protection Act in 2023, providing a legal framework to address privacy concerns related to AI platforms.

Enhancing privacy protections is paramount in safeguarding individuals' rights in the age of AI. Stricter regulations on data collection, usage, and retention are essential to curb potential abuses and ensure individuals maintain control over their personal information. While Artificial Intelligence holds immense potential, its dark side cannot be ignored. Stakeholders across industries, academia, and policymaking must collaborate to navigate the complexities of AI responsibly and ethically, ensuring a future where AI serves humanity's best interests.

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