Google is accused of stealing data from millions of users to train AI tools



Google was hit with a wide-ranging lawsuit on Tuesday.

The proposed class action lawsuit Against Google, parent company Alphabet and Google’s AI subsidiary DeepMind were filed in federal court in California on Tuesday by the Clarkson Law Firm. The organization earlier Last month, they filed a similar lawsuit against ChatGPT maker OpenAI. (OpenAI did not respond to an earlier request for comment on the lawsuit.)

Google is “secretly stealing everything created and shared on the Internet by hundreds of millions of Americans” and using that data to train its AI products, such as chatbot Bard, the complaint said. The complaint alleges that Google has “taken our entire digital footprint,” including “invention and copywriting,” to build its AI products.

Representatives for Google, Alphabet and DeepMind did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The complaint refers to Google’s latest update privacy policy The company clearly says it can use publicly accessible data to train its AI models and tools like Bard.

In response to the former Verge reports In the update, the company said its policy has long been clear that Google uses publicly available data from the open web to train language models for services like Google Translate. This latest update simply explains that new services like Bard are also included.

The charge comes as new AI tools have gained a lot of attention in recent months for their ability to generate text and images in response to user queries. The large language models that support this new technology can do so by training on vast online data.

In the process, however, companies are adding to Google’s data on copyright issues from the works included in these datasets and their use of personal and possibly sensitive information from everyday users. charge

Tim Giordano, one of Clarkson’s lawyers who filed the lawsuit against Google, told CNN in an interview, “Google needs to understand that ‘publicly available’ does not necessarily mean free.” “Our personal data and information is our property, and it is valuable, and no one has the right to take it and use it for any purpose.”

The suit seeks injunctive relief in the form of a temporary ban on commercial access and commercial development of Google’s generative AI tools like Bard. Google is also seeking undisclosed damages and payments to those whose data it claims has been misused. The organization said it has lined up eight plaintiffs, including a minor.

Giordano is scraping data to train AI tools, comparing the pros and cons of how Google typically analyzes internet data to index the main search engine.

In its search engine, Google says it may “use a link to your work that leads someone to buy or engage with it.” But scraping data to train AI tools is “creating an alternative version of the job that changes the incentives for anyone to buy the job,” Giordano added.

While some internet users may be used to having their digital data collected and used for search results or targeted advertising, the same may not be true for AI training. “People couldn’t imagine that their data would be used in this way,” Giordano said.

Ryan Clarkson, a partner at the law firm, said Google “needs to allow people to opt out” of having their data used to train AI while still maintaining their ability to use the internet for their everyday needs.

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