November 1, 2023
By Nick Graham - Solution Architect – Public Sector, Skyhigh Security
Artificial intelligence (AI) stands out as one of today’s most transformative forces in technology. Yet many security experts find themselves at the intersection of AI’s potential and the imperative for security. With President Biden’s recent Executive Order on Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy AI, the stakes have never been higher or the opportunities more profound.
A New Paradigm for AI Safety and Security
The Executive Order is groundbreaking in its scope and ambition. It establishes rigorous standards for AI safety and security, with a focus on protecting Americans from potential AI risks. Key directives include:
- Mandatory Sharing of Safety Test Results: Companies developing powerful AI systems that pose significant risks to national security or public health will now be required to share their safety test results with the U.S. government. This transparency ensures that AI systems are both safe and trustworthy before public release.
- Development of AI Safety Standards: The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is tasked with setting rigorous standards for AI safety testing. Furthermore, the Department of Homeland Security will establish the AI Safety and Security Board, marking a significant step towards advancing AI safety.
- Protection Against AI-Enabled Threats: The order emphasizes the need to protect against AI’s potential misuse in creating dangerous biological materials and AI-enabled fraud. It also calls for the development of AI tools to bolster cybersecurity, addressing vulnerabilities in critical software.
Guarding Privacy in the Age of AI
AI’s capability to extract and exploit personal data is undeniable. Recognizing this, the Executive Order calls for:
- Enhanced Privacy-Preserving Techniques: The emphasis is on accelerating the development of techniques that allow AI systems to be trained while preserving the privacy of the training data.
- Strengthening Privacy Guidance: Federal agencies are directed to evaluate their data collection practices, especially concerning personally identifiable data, and to develop guidelines for evaluating the effectiveness of privacy-preserving techniques.
Promoting Equity, Supporting Workers, and Ensuring Innovation
The Executive Order is comprehensive, addressing potential biases in AI, supporting workers in an AI-driven economy, and promoting innovation and competition. It underscores the need for clear guidance to prevent AI-driven discrimination, supports the responsible use of AI in sectors like healthcare and education, and catalyzes AI research across the nation.
Skyhigh Security’s Perspective: The Road Ahead
For all of us at Skyhigh Security, this Executive Order resonates deeply. As AI continues to shape the cloud security landscape, the directives laid out by President Biden provide both a roadmap and a challenge. We are poised to leverage AI’s potential while ensuring the utmost safety, security, and trustworthiness of our solutions.
Our challenge to all IT professionals and security decision-makers: The future of AI is here, and it’s our collective responsibility to navigate the challenges it poses and harness its potential responsibly. Engage with us at Skyhigh Security as we embark on this journey, ensuring that the cloud remains a safe and secure space for all.
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