Telefonica affirms AI ethics pledge - Mobile World Live

Telefonica affirms AI ethics pledge

30 OCT 2018

Telefonica committed to deploy artificial intelligence (AI) with integrity and transparency, stating it is one of the first companies in the world to establish principles and ethical guidelines for its use.

Approved by the executive committee, the principles are said to underscore “gender equality and impartiality, transparency, clarity, privacy and security”. They apply in all of the markets in which it operates and extends throughout the value chain, including partners and providers.

“We’re concerned about the possible use of artificial intelligence for the creation or dissemination of fake news, addiction to technology, and the possible reinforcement of social bias in the algorithms in general. These phenomena undermine the trust of our customers, our most valuable asset, and hinder the development of a fairer society,” said Jose Maria Alvarez-Pallete, chairman and CEO.

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The operator group said that from now on, it will assess projects around a number of principles, with the goal of “humanising the use of technology for the benefit of everyone”.

This means AI implementations should be fair, with results generated without discrimination around race, ethnic origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, or any other personal condition. AI applications should also be transparent and explainable, with the goal being “for users to know that they are interacting with an AI system, which of their data is used, and for what”.

AI should also be people-centric, Telefonica said, being at the service of society and generating tangible benefits for people, whose human rights cannot be violated. Telefonica has also committed to using AI to help meet the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Privacy and security should feature in AI implementations by design. And Telefonica is also committed to verifying the logic and data used by third-party providers and partners.

Telefonica recently said it was integrating AI with its Luca data analytics service to deliver the most effective use of big data.

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