Harris to announce steps to counter AI risks

Vice President Kamala Harris plans to announce a series of additional measures to counter the risks of artificial intelligence on Wednesday as she prepares to attend a global summit in Britain where world and technology leaders will discuss the future of technology.

During her visit, which will begin on Wednesday with an address at the US Embassy in London, Ms Harris plans to outline the safeguards the US government will seek to put in place to manage the risks of artificial intelligence as it asserts itself as a global leader in the arena.

Taken together, the steps Ms. Harris plans to announce are intended to complement the sweeping executive order President Biden signed this week and make its ideals part of broader global standards for a technology that carries great promise and danger.

They include a new draft policy from the Office of Management and Budget that would guide how federal agencies use artificial intelligence, overseen by new chief AI officers. She will also announce that 30 other nations have joined a “political declaration” created by the United States that seeks to establish “a set of norms for the responsible development, deployment and use of military AI capabilities,” as well as $200 million in philanthropic funding to support the administration’s goals.

“The urgency of this moment must compel us to create a collective vision of what this future must be,” Ms. Harris plans to say Wednesday, according to prepared remarks released by her office.

The executive order Mr. Biden signed on Monday marked the United States’ most concrete regulatory effort in the artificial intelligence arena to date. Among other things, it requires companies to report to the federal government risks that their systems could help countries or terrorists build weapons of mass destruction. It also seeks to reduce the dangers of “deep fakes” – audio and video generated by artificial intelligence that are difficult to distinguish from authentic recordings – that could sway elections or deceive consumers.

“President Biden and I believe that all leaders, from government, civil society and the private sector, have a moral, ethical and social duty to ensure that AI is adopted and advanced in a way that protects the public from potential harm and ensures that everyone can enjoy it. in its strengths,” Ms. Harris plans to say in her comments.

On Thursday, Ms Harris will represent the United States at a summit hosted by British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, which is expected to attract tech figures such as Elon Musk and representatives of AI-advanced countries such as China.

The United States has lagged behind countries such as the European Union, China and Israel in regulating the technology, and Congress has yet to pass major legislation on the subject, and many of the provisions in Mr. Biden’s executive order are largely unenforceable. But the administration has collected agreements from top companies, pledging to manage risks in the race to capitalize on the technology, and established an “AI Bill of Rights” that focuses on consumer protections.

Among other announcements on Wednesday will be a “virtual hackathon” in which the White House will invite teams of technology experts to build models that can intercept unsolicited robocalls from scammers who use AI-generated voices to target vulnerable groups such as the elderly.

Ms Harris’s messages will place particular emphasis on the consumer protection aspect of AI, including how it can exacerbate existing inequalities. Research has shown that AI programs can inadvertently produce biased results that discriminate by race, gender or age.

Ms Harris plans to focus on the “full range” of risks that have already emerged, such as bias, discrimination and the spread of misinformation, and argues that AI safety should be “based on the public interest”.

Ms Harris’s trip to Britain adds to her role as a diplomatic force in the administration, having now visited 20 countries and more than 100 foreign leaders since her election. It also adds to her growing portfolio, which includes some of the toughest issues facing the United States, such as the migration crisis at the southern border.

While in London, Ms. Harris also plans to discuss the wars in Israel and Ukraine with Mr. Sunak. She and her husband, Doug Emhoff, will also have a private dinner with Mr. Sunak and his wife.

Cecilia Kang contributed to the reporting.

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