ChatGPT (opens in new tab) has exploded across the internet, heralding what many experts are calling a bold new era: the era of AI. With AI tools becoming increasingly powerful, the question many leaders are exploring is how to use these tools in our businesses. How can they help our teams grow? How can they improve our user experience? Undoubtedly, as time goes on we will see AI used in more and more creative ways — an exciting prospect to consider.
However, as the use of AI-powered language models such as ChatGPT become more prevalent in both business and personal settings, it's critical for us to understand the serious cybersecurity (opens in new tab) risks they present. They are powerful tools, of course, but like any new online tool there are very real dangers to consider, as well as ethical implications — especially if you plan on using them in your business.
On the one hand, AI language models like ChatGPT offer a level of convenience and efficiency that was previously impossible. These models have the ability to quickly analyze vast amounts of data and provide sophisticated insights in a matter of seconds. They can assist with tasks such as writing, data analysis, and even customer service. As a result, many businesses and individuals have turned to AI language models as a tool to improve their workflow and stay ahead of the competition.
Francis Dinha is the co-founder and CEO of OpenVPN Inc.
However, as with any technology, there is a dark side to AI language models. One of the primary concerns is that these models can be used for malicious purposes, such as phishing and impersonation. In fact, phishing has become one of the most significant security threats in the world, and AI-powered language models only make the situation more complicated. An attacker can use a language model to create a seemingly legitimate email that appears to come from a trusted source, such as a bank or a government agency — or even a member of your own team. With the rapid advancement of machine learning and natural language processing, AI language models can now mimic human writing and speech to a remarkable degree. As a result, it's becoming easier for attackers to impersonate real people, potentially causing significant harm to both the individual and the organization they represent.
In addition to the security risks, using AI language models raises serious ethical questions. These models can perpetuate harmful biases and stereotypes, leading to discrimination and harm to certain groups of people. What’s more, the lack of transparency around how AI language models make decisions, combined with the potential for their misuse, raises concerns about accountability and who is responsible if something goes wrong.
So what can organizations and individuals do to mitigate the risks associated with AI language models like ChatGPT?
First of all, make sure you’re using AI language models from reputable sources. This helps to ensure that the model has been trained on high-quality data and that it has undergone rigorous testing and validation. Then, when you’re training your own AI language models, make sure to use diverse data (opens in new tab). AI language models that are trained on diverse and inclusive data are less likely to perpetuate harmful biases and stereotypes; they’re exposed to a wider range of experiences and perspectives, which helps to reduce the risk of perpetuating discriminatory attitudes and practices.
Secondly, make sure you have a system in place to verify the accuracy of your AI language models. Regularly checking and verifying the accuracy of your AI language models is essential to ensuring that they are functioning correctly and providing reliable information. Similarly, make sure you have security measures in place. AI language models can be vulnerable to security threats, such as unauthorized access, theft, and misuse. To prevent these risks, make sure you implement measures like encryption (opens in new tab), two-factor authentication, and access control systems (opens in new tab).
Lastly, stay informed about the latest threats facing AI. Constantly monitoring news about these language models might feel tedious at times, but it’s essential to staying one step ahead of hackers. Be proactive in identifying and mitigating potential security risks; conduct regular security audits and set up systems to prevent and respond to security incidents.
AI language models like ChatGPT offer incredible potential for businesses and individuals, but they also present serious security and ethical risks that must be addressed. By following best practices and taking proactive steps to mitigate the risks, we can ensure the safe and responsible use of these tools for years to come.