Chinese officials issue warning about AI and national security

Chinese officials issue warning about AI and national security

May 31, 2023

Officials in China have warned about the risks posed by the rapid advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) development and subsequently called for tighter measures on national security. 

The remarks come from a meeting on Tuesday, May 30, in which Chinese President Xi Jinping and prominent members of the communist party stressed the country’s ambitions to take the lead in the global race to develop the cutting-edge technology.

Local news outlet Xinhua News Agency reported that local leaders discussed the need for “dedicated efforts to safeguard political security and improve the security governance of internet data and artificial intelligence.”

“We must be prepared for worst-case and extreme scenarios, and be ready to withstand the major test of high winds, choppy waters and even dangerous storms.”

According to Xinhua, Xi said that the national security problems faced by the country have “increased dramatically” and that China needs a “new pattern of development with a new security architecture.”

This is not the first time Chinese authorities have taken action toward AI development. In April, Chinese authorities announced a mandate for reviews of all forthcoming generative AI services that will be released in the country prior to public use. 

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These moves toward AI regulation come as China has been actively pursuing AI development. Local developers have been creating workarounds to United States sanctions preventing Chinese access to the latest Nvidia chips.

China is not the only world power that has its eyes on the trajectory of AI development. In the U.S., officials in Washington, D.C. recently held a listening session to understand the impact of AI-powered surveillance on workers.

U.S. President Joe Biden has also publicly urged tech companies to address the risks of the technology.

Company executives are aware of the implications of AI development left unchecked and have called for “guardrails” from lawmakers.

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