Following a directive from the Italian data protection authority, OpenAI has blocked access to its AI chatbot, ChatGPT, in that nation. The authority is investigating ChatGPT over suspected breaches of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
OpenAI has disabled access to the service for Italian users and will issue refunds to ChatGPT Plus subscribers in the country. The company has also temporarily paused subscription renewals. OpenAI has not informed users whose online data it used to train the technology, nor has it been transparent about the data it’s processing.
According to the GDPR’s transparency standards, users and people whose data was scraped ought to have been informed. The regulator also expressed concerns over the accuracy of the information the chatbot provides, with some information about individuals being erroneous.
These inaccurate results can be produced by ChatGPT and other generative AI chatbots, which is a GDPR breach. The penalties for confirmed GDPR breaches can scale up to 4% of a data processor’s annual global turnover.