UN chief backs idea of ​​global AI watchdog like nuclear agency

By Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS, June 12 (Reuters) – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday backed a proposal by some artificial intelligence officials to create an international AI watchdog like the International Intelligence Agency. atomic energy (IAEA).

Generative AI technology capable of creating authoritative prose from text prompts has captivated audiences since ChatGPT launched six months ago and has become the fastest growing app of all. time. AI has also become a concern over its ability to create deepfake images and other misinformation.

“The alarm bells on the latest form of artificial intelligence – generative AI – are deafening. And they’re louder from the developers who designed it,” Guterres told reporters. “We must take these warnings seriously.”

He announced his intention to start work by the end of the year on a high-level advisory body on AI to regularly review AI governance arrangements and offer recommendations on how they can align with human rights, the rule of law and the common good.

But on Monday, he added: “I would be in favor of the idea that we could have an artificial intelligence agency…inspired by what the international atomic energy agency is today.”

Guterres said such a model could be “very interesting,” but noted that “only member states can create it, not the UN Secretariat.” The Vienna-based IAEA was established in 1957 and promotes the safe, secure and peaceful use of nuclear technologies while monitoring possible violations of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). It has 176 member states.

ChatGPT’s creator, OpenAI, said last month that a body like the IAEA could impose restrictions on deployment, verify compliance with security standards and track computing power usage.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has also backed the idea and said he wants Britain to house global AI safety regulations. Britain is due to hold a summit later this year on how coordinated international action can tackle the risks of AI.

Guterres said he supported plans for a summit in Britain, but said it would have to be preceded by “serious work”. He said he plans to appoint a scientific advisory board made up of AI experts and chief scientists from UN agencies in the coming days.

(Reporting by Michelle Nichols; editing by Mark Heinrich)

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