Earlier this week, the White House issued a wide-ranging Executive Order (EO) on artificial intelligence. The EO represents a significant step for the U.S. in establishing rules for the safe, secure, and trustworthy use of AI.
While legislation is needed in many areas—such as data privacy—the EO addresses many aspects of AI; it sets safety and security standards, creates reporting requirements for large AI developers, establishes consumer protections, and provides direction to federal agencies about the use of AI. Voices for Innovation will be following the AI policy debate closely—and encouraging our members to be part of the discussion. Here are links to coverage from the New York Times and the Associated Press. Here are links to the White House Fact Sheet and the full EO.
Microsoft Vice Chair and President Brad Smith voiced support for the EO, calling it, “another critical step forward in the governance of AI technology.” He adds, “AI promises to lower costs and improve services for the Federal government, and we look forward to working with U.S. officials to fully realize the power and promise of this emerging technology.” See his full statement here.
Thank you for reading. Below, you’ll find this week’s tech policy news highlights and a featured podcast.
This Week in Washington
- POLITICO Pro and The Washington Post: While speaking at the U.S. Embassy in London, Vice President Kamala Harris urged the international community to focus on the “full spectrum” of AI risks instead of just the existential threats that exist around the emerging tech. This talk came as the AI Safety Summit was taking place in Bletchley Park, where countries signed the Bletchley Declaration, a call for policies across borders to prevent risk from AI.
- CNN: The Supreme Court is considering a pair of cases with First Amendment implications to decide if public officials at all levels can block their critical constituents on social media.
- FedScoop: The Biden administration’s long-awaited executive order on artificial intelligence, which aims to tackle everything from privacy risks to federal procurement, also calls on several agencies to take on new responsibilities related to emerging AI tech. These responsibilities include issuing new regulatory strategies for the federal use of the technology and developing more AI jobs.
- The Washington Post: Several industry groups have told the Office of the National Cybersecurity Director that the federal government may need to create an entity to oversee and harmonize the various rules and conflicting security regulations.
- Fierce Telecom: The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) released a waiver for the letter of credit (LOC) requirement for the Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) program, in which they addressed industry concerns and outlined four alternatives, including obtaining the LOC from a credit union instead of a bank.
- Fierce Telecom: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is set to give out $18.2 billion in Enhanced Alternative Connect American Cost Model (Enhanced A-CAM) support to 368 carriers to help address rural connectivity challenges.
- Nextgov/FCW: Reps. Frank Lucas (R-OK) and Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) – the chair and ranking member of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology – are set to reintroduce a bill that will reauthorize the National Quantum Initiative Act, which was first signed into law in 2018. This legislation would extend the support of quantum research and development through FY28 and focus on global competition and expanding the scope of research.
- Microsoft: Microsoft has announced the Secure Future Initiative (SFI), an initiative that will bring every part of its advanced cybersecurity protection together and help pursue the next generation of cybersecurity protection. It will have three pillars focused on AI-based cyber defense, advances in fundamental software engineering, and advocacy for stronger application of international norms to protect civilians from cyber threats.
- CyberScoop: A recent cybersecurity workforce study by the nonprofit ISC2 showed that the global demand for cybersecurity workers is not just increasing but quickly outpacing the supply. This report comes as the Biden administration is working to boost the U.S. cybersecurity workforce through its National Cyber Workforce and Education Strategy.
- Reuters: The G7 signed a voluntary code of conduct for companies developing advanced AI systems, which will set a landmark for how major countries govern AI amid privacy concerns and security risks.
The New York Times
- Hard Fork Podcast
Dozens of state attorneys general have sued Meta, claiming the company knowingly created features that induce “extended, addictive and compulsive social media use” among teenagers and children. In a country without wide-reaching internet regulations, are lawsuits the way to reign in tech companies? Then, for our first episode on YouTube, we talk with the YouTuber and tech reviewer Marques Brownlee about how the platform has changed, and the future tech he’s excited about. And finally, artificial intelligence image generators are getting scary good. Casey tells us what he’s been using them for. (The People v. Meta, Marques Brownlee on YouTube and Future Tech, and DALL-E 3 Arrives – October 27, 2023)