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Technology & Digital round-up: April 2024

“This month’s edition of the Technology and Digital round-up is dominated by developments in relation to AI. We’re seeing the regulators ramping up their initiatives in this area and attempts being made to push through specific AI legislation in contrast to current government policy. With the next AI Safety Summit confirmed to take place on 21 and 22 May, we’re looking forward to seeing how the global discussions develop.”

 Luke Jackson, Director, Commercial

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A crystal ball is sat infront of a silver laptop computer. A visual metaphor for the topic of this post, top tech trends in 2024.

The legal part…

  • With AI developments continuing to dominate this month, the recordings of our recent AI webinars on employment law issues, policies and governance and intellectual property are now available to view.
  • The Information Commissioner’s Office is seeking views until 10 May 2024 on the accuracy of generative AI models. This is the third chapter in the regulator’s consultation series on how data protection law applies to the development and use of generative AI.
  • The Competition and Markets Authority outlined growing concerns in markets for AI foundation models as it published an update paper as part of an ongoing review.
  • The Financial Conduct Authority outlined its approach to AI following the government’s AI white paper response. The regulator also published a feedback statement on the potential competition impacts from the data asymmetry between Big Tech and financial services firms. The FCA’s Chief Executive talked about both of these developments, and more, in a speech at the Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum.
  • The DRCF launched its AI and Digital Hub, a multiagency informal advice service to support innovators working on AI and digital products.
  • An Artificial Intelligence (Regulation) Bill is making its way through the legislative process. It’s a private member’s bill, not a planned piece of government legislation, and is at odds with the government’s current approach to AI regulation.
  • In related news, the Trades Union Congress published its draft Artificial Intelligence (Employment and Regulation) Bill.
  • Attempts to push through legislation on AI are not confined to the UK. Over in the United States, a congressman introduced a Bill requiring transparency from companies regarding their use of copyrighted work to train their generative AI models.
  • The FCA and Bank of England issued a joint consultation and draft guidance on their proposed approach to operating the Digital Securities Sandbox. The Sandbox is designed to help facilitate the adoption of innovative technology in digital assets in the UK.
  • The ICO released guidance for the health and social care sectors on transparency, a key principle of data protection law.
  • With the EU AI Act expected to receive formal sign-off by the end of May 2024, look out for our series of snapshot articles covering different aspects of the Act and the practical implications to help affected businesses prepare for implementation.

…and in other news

  • Continuing with the AI theme, the government confirmed that the AI Seoul Summit is set to go ahead on 21 and 22 May 2024. The event will build on discussions held, and commitments made, during last year’s first global AI Safety Summit.
  • In related news, the government announced a partnership between the UK and US AI Safety Institutes.
  • Matt Lingard, Director in our Technology & Digital team, discussed how AI is emerging as a powerful tool to help the food and drink industry reduce food waste and emissions.
  • The Institute for Public Policy Research published a report on the impact of generative AI on the UK labour market, with possibilities for huge job disruption in future or significant GDP gains, depending on government policy.
  • Microsoft announced that Microsoft AI, a newly formed organisation to help advance Microsoft’s consumer AI products and research, is opening a new AI hub in London.
  • In other news, the National Cyber Security Centre published guidance for CEOs on how to manage a cyber incident and published a new podcast series on a wide range of cyber security topics.
  • We’ve also seen the NCSC publish guidance tips to help secure and reduce interactive access to cloud infrastructure, and an updated version of the Cyber Assessment Framework to reflect the increased threat to critical national infrastructure.
  • President Biden signed into law a bill that could see TikTok sold or banned in the US due to national security concerns.
  • And finally, backflipping humanoid hydraulic robot Atlas is retiring and making way for a fully electric model designed for real-world applications. Hyundai will test Atlas as it builds the next generation of automotive manufacturing capabilities.

If you have queries about any of the points covered in this edition of the Technology & Digital round-up, or need further advice or assistance, please get in touch with SallyLuke or one of our Technology & Digital experts.

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