On Devil’s Night Day, two significant AI developments were announced. First, the White House’s Executive Order on Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence (“AI EO”). Second, the Group of 7 (“G-7”) announced its International Guiding Principles on Artificial Intelligence (“G-7 Principles”) and companion Code of Conduct for AI Developers (“G-7 Code”). All are three broad strokes – the devil will be in the details.

Following is a short summary of each but please check back soon for more analysis and key takeaways for businesses and their AI governance programs.

The AI EO

The AI EO is intended to create a framework for responsible innovation and use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) in the United States. It builds on the White House’s October 2022 Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights.

Highlights of the AI EO are:

  1. New Standards for AI Safety and Security“As AI’s capabilities grow, so do its implications for Americans’ safety and security.”
  2. Protecting Americans’ Privacy“Without safeguards, AI can put Americans’ privacy further at risk. AI not only makes it easier to extract, identify, and exploit personal data, but it also heightens incentives to do so because companies use data to train AI systems.”
  3. Advancing Equity and Civil Rights“Irresponsible uses of AI can lead to and deepen discrimination, bias, and other abuses in justice, healthcare, and housing.”
  4. Standing Up for Consumers, Patients, and Students“AI can bring real benefits to consumers—for example, by making products better, cheaper, and more widely available. But AI also raises the risk of injuring, misleading, or otherwise harming Americans.”
  5. Supporting Workers“AI is changing America’s jobs and workplaces, offering both the promise of improved productivity but also the dangers of increased workplace surveillance, bias, and job displacement.”
  6. Promoting Innovation and Competition“America already leads in AI innovation—more AI startups raised first-time capital in the United States last year than in the next seven countries combined.”
  7. Advancing American Leadership Abroad“The Biden-Harris Administration will continue working with other nations to support safe, secure, and trustworthy deployment and use of AI worldwide.”
  8. Ensuring Responsible and Effective Government Use of AI“AI can help government deliver better results for the American people. It can expand agencies’ capacity to regulate, govern, and disburse benefits, and it can cut costs and enhance the security of government systems. However, use of AI can pose risks, such as discrimination and unsafe decisions.”

The AI EO is not directly applicable to the private sector; rather, the AI EO directs the federal government to create certain AI-related standards, some of which will apply to AI developers and users. Although the AI EO is revocable by a successor President, the AI EO offers some structure to AI until Congress agrees on comprehensive AI legislation.

G7 Principles and Voluntary Code of Conduct

The G-7 Principles are directed to “all AI actors, when and as applicable to cover the design, development, deployment and use” and intended to cover “advanced AI systems”, which include in particular “the most advanced foundation models and generative AI systems”. The G-7 Code has a narrower focus, i.e., developers of advanced AI systems. Both are voluntary – at least for now.

In the introductions to the G-7 Principles and G-7 Code, the G-7 makes clear that both are intended as “innovation friendly” and expected to evolve as AI systems evolve.

The G-7 Principles are:

  1. Take appropriate measures throughout the development of advanced AI systems, including prior to and throughout their deployment and placement on the market, to identify, evaluate, and mitigate risks across the AI lifecycle.
  2. Identify and mitigate vulnerabilities, and, where appropriate, incidents and patterns of misuse, after deployment including placement on the market.
  3. Publicly report advanced AI systems’ capabilities, limitations and domains of appropriate and inappropriate use, to support ensuring sufficient transparency, thereby contributing to increase accountability.
  4. Work towards responsible information sharing and reporting of incidents among organizations developing advanced AI systems including with industry, governments, civil society, and academia.
  5. Develop, implement and disclose AI governance and risk management policies, grounded in a risk-based approach – including privacy policies, and mitigation measures, in particular for organizations developing advanced AI systems.
  6. Invest in and implement robust security controls, including physical security, cybersecurity and insider threat safeguards across the AI lifecycle.
  7. Develop and deploy reliable content authentication and provenance mechanisms, where technically feasible, such as watermarking or other techniques to enable users to identify AI-generated content.
  8. Prioritize research to mitigate societal, safety and security risks and prioritize investment in effective mitigation measures.
  9. Prioritize the development of advanced AI systems to address the world’s greatest challenges, notably but not limited to the climate crisis, global health and education.
  10. Advance the development of and, where appropriate, adoption of international technical standards.
  11. Implement appropriate data input measures and protections for personal data and intellectual property.

The G-7 Code incorporates the G-7 Principles into a “risk based” approach to development with a focus on accountability and transparency.