EU aims to set global standards for AI

Reuters Brussels | Updated on April 21, 2021

Critics of the technology contend that it can be used as a tool for social control by repressive governments.   -  istock/metamorworks

To impose hefty fines for violations

The European Commission on Wednesday announced tough draft rules governing the use of artificial intelligence (AI), including hefty fines for violations, a ban on surveillance with a few exceptions and strict safeguards for high risk AI applications.

EU takes charge

The AI rules could help the European Union take the lead in regulating a technology that critics say has harmful social effects and can be used as a tool for social control by repressive governments. The supporters of AI see it as an engine of economic growth.

The move comes even as China moves ahead in the AI race, while the Covid-19 pandemic has underlined the importance of algorithms and internet-connected gadgets in daily life.

Also read: EU proposes rules for high-risk artificial intelligence uses

The Commission said AI applications that allow governments to do social scoring and others that exploit children will be banned. High-risk AI applications used in recruitment, critical infrastructures, credit scoring, migration and law enforcement will be subject to strict safeguards.

Fines for defaulters

Companies breaching the rules face fines up to 6 per cent of their global turnover or €30 million, whichever is the higher figure.

Published on April 21, 2021

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