On October 23, 2018, the 40th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (the “Conference”) released a Declaration on Ethics and Protection in Artificial Intelligence (“the Declaration”). In it, the Conference endorsed several guiding principles as “core values” to protect human rights as the development of artificial intelligence (“AI”) continues apace. Key principles include:

  • AI and machine learning technologies should be designed, developed and used in the context of respect for fundamental human rights and in accordance with the “fairness principle,” including by considering the impact of AI on society at large.
  • AI systems’ transparency and intelligibility should be improved.
  • AI systems should be designed and developed responsibly, which entails proceeding from the principles of “privacy by default” and “privacy by design.”
  • Unlawful biases and discrimination that may result from the use of data in AI should be reduced and mitigated.

The Conference called for the establishment of international common governance principles on AI in line with these concepts. As an initial step toward that goal, the Conference announced a permanent working group on Ethics and Data Protection in Artificial Intelligence.

The Declaration’s authors are the French Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés, the European Data Protection Supervisor and the Italian Garante per la protezione dei dati personali. It was co-sponsored by fifteen other organizations from nations across the world.