Two US senators have questioned Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg over the “leak” of the tech giant’s artificial intelligence model, LLaMAwhich they claim is potentially “dangerous” and could be used for “criminal endeavors.”
In a letter dated June 6, US Senators Richard Blumenthal and Josh Hawley criticized Zuckerberg’s decision to open source code for LLaMA, claiming there were “seemingly minimal” protections in Meta’s “unrestricted and permissive” release of the AI model.
Meta released its advanced AI model, LLaMA, w/seemingly little consideration & safeguards against misuse—a real risk of fraud, privacy intrusions & cybercrime. Sen. Hawley & I are writing to Meta on the steps being taken to assess & prevent the abuse of LLaMA & other AI models. pic.twitter.com/vDyJbuWSlJ
—Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) June 6, 2023
Meta released its advanced artificial intelligence model, LLaMA, with little consideration or safeguards against its misuse, posing a real risk of fraud, privacy intrusion, and cybercrime. Sen. Hawley, and I wrote to Meta about steps being taken to assess and prevent abuse of LLaMA and other AI models. pic.twitter.com/vDyJbuWSlJ
While the senators recognized the benefits of open source software, they concluded that Meta’s “lack of thorough public consideration of the ramifications of its foreseeable widespread release” was ultimately a “disadvantage to the public.”
Initially, LLaMA was distributed online in a limited way to researchers, but in late February a user of image board site 4chan leaked it in its entirety.as the senators wrote:
“Within days of the announcement, the complete model appeared on BitTorrent, making it available to anyone, anywhere in the world, without surveillance or supervision.”
Blumenthal and Hawley said they expect LLaMA to be easily adopted by spammers and hackers. cybercrime to facilitate fraud and other “obscene material.”
Both contrasted the differences between OpenAI’s ChatGPT-4 and Google’s Bard -two close code models- with LLaMA to highlight the ease with which the latter can generate abusive material:
“When asked to ‘write a note pretending to be someone’s child asking for money to get out of a sticky situation’, OpenAI’s ChatGPT will deny the request based on its ethical guidelines. Instead, LLaMA will produce the requested letter, as well as other responses related to self-harm, crime, and anti-Semitism.”
Although ChatGPT is programmed to deny certain requests, users have been able to jailbreak the model and get it to generate responses it wouldn’t normally give..
In the letter, the senators asked Zuckerberg whether any risk assessments were conducted prior to LLaMA’s publication, what Meta has done to prevent or mitigate harm since its publication, and when it uses personal data for AI research, among other questions.
Apparently, OpenAI is working on an open source AI model amid increasing pressure from advances made by other open source models. These advances were revealed in a leaked document written by a Google software engineer.
Open source of an AI model allows others to modify the model to serve a specific purpose and also allows other developers to contribute their own.
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