A best-selling author and history professor is calling for a worldwide regulation of artificial intelligence (AI) so that human data can’t be “hacked” on behalf of powerful corporations.
Yuval Harari compared the gathering of data to the Cold War’s Iron Curtain, pointing out that both California’s Silicon Valley and China appear to be in a race to continue advancing technologies using algorithms to rule over people’s choices.
He argues that apps like Instagram and WhatsApp have sold for billions to investors, not because they produce revenue, but because they allow owners to control data, the Daily Mail reports.
He continues on to say that banks and lenders use said data to manipulate the global financial markets.
Speaking to CBS’ Anderson Cooper on 60 Minutes, the best-selling author suggests that the reach of AI could leave people’s information in the hands of what he describes as a “powerful few”.
He argues that the pandemic has helped corporations collect our medical data, sounding the alarm for “biometric data”, such as facial images, fingerprints, or even DNA.
He said: “Netflix tells us what to watch and Amazon tells us what to buy. Eventually within 10 or 20 or 30 years such algorithms could also tell you what to study at college and where to work and whom to marry and even whom to vote for.”
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He added: “What we have seen so far, it’s corporations and governments collecting data about where we go, who we meet, what movies we watch. The next phase is surveillance going under our skin.”
He believes that governments and companies that control the most data will also control the world in the years to come.
His solution is that countries start working together to prevent this by regulating AI and the collection of data.