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After receiving a GDPR violation warning, ChatGPT leaves Italy

Asserting that the artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot violates European Union privacy regulations and lacks procedures to prevent inappropriate interactions with young children, the Italian data protection authority (DPA) shut down ChatGPT in the nation.

While it looks into the company's operations in Italy, Garante ordered OpenAI, the chatbot's American developer, to stop processing the data of Italian residents. The November-launched ChatGPT is set up to engage in conversations and provide information on countless themes.

Garante stated in a translated news statement on Friday that "[t]here appears to be no legal basis underpinning the massive collection and processing of personal data in order to 'train' the algorithms on which the platform relies."

Although being intended for users older than 13, ChatGPT does not require age verification, according to the DPA. According to the agency, this "exposes children to receiving responses that are absolutely inappropriate to their age and awareness."

Garante also mentioned a data breach that ChatGPT allegedly suffered last month that exposed subscribers' payment information and conversations.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation, OpenAI is required to react to the DPA's concerns within 20 days or risk a fine of up to 20 million euros (U.S. $21.8 million) or 4% of annual turnover (GDPR).

According to a report from TechCrunch, OpenAI released a message to users in Italy informing them that it will provide refunds to subscribers and temporarily stop any new subscriptions or renewals in the country.

"We of course defer to the Italian government and have ceased offering ChatGPT in Italy (though we think we are following all privacy laws)," stated OpenAI CEO Sam Altman on Twitter.

ChatGPT is also banned in China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia.



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