- UK Government officially publishes report on capabilities and risks from frontier AI for the first time, drawing on sources including intelligence assessments.
- This will inform discussions at next week’s AI Safety Summit at Bletchley Park, which aims to build a shared global understanding of the risks posed by frontier AI.
- Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will today give a speech on how we have a global responsibility to understand and address the risks surrounding AI, in order to realise all its benefits and opportunities for future generations.
A new paper into the capabilities and risks from frontier AI has been published for the first time by the UK Government today (Thursday 26 October), as the Prime Minister is set to give a speech on the global responsibility to address the risks head on and make the most of the opportunities AI can bring.
There are a range of views in the scientific, expert and global communities about the risks in relation to the rapid progress in frontier AI, which is expected to continue to evolve in the coming years at rapid speed. The report published today draws on various sources, including UK intelligence assessments.
One of the key objectives of the AI Safety Summit – the first ever global summit to discuss AI safety – is to come to a shared understanding on the emerging risks, which can then inform how nations manage them. It also highlights the need for countries around the world to understand the pitfalls presented by frontier AI to unlock its enormous benefits.
The publication will serve as a discussion paper at next week’s summit. It forms part of the UK Government’s action to take long-term decisions for a brighter future, leading the way globally on AI safety. It is in the long-term interest of the country to understand and grip the risks of AI in order to seize the enormous opportunities it brings to improve people’s lives, public services and economic growth and productivity.
The publication comes ahead of a speech by the Prime Minister today on AI. He will set out how the UK Government will do what is right to make AI safe, cement the UK as a global leader in AI safety, and ensure we can harness its benefits to build a better future for generations to come.
In his speech, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is expected to say:
“AI will bring new knowledge, new opportunities for economic growth, new advances in human capability, and the chance to solve problems we once thought beyond us. But it also brings new dangers and new fears.
“So, the responsible thing for me to do is to address those fears head on, giving you the peace of mind that we will keep you safe, while making sure you and your children have all the opportunities for a better future that AI can bring.
“Doing the right thing, not the easy thing, means being honest with people about the risks from these technologies.”
The report is made up of three parts:
- Capabilities and risks from frontier AI: A discussion paper on the need for further research into AI risk. It covers the current state of frontier AI capabilities, how these might improve in the future, as well as the risks they currently present, including societal harms, misuse and loss of control.
- Safety and Security Risks of Generative Artificial Intelligence to 2025: A report drawing on sources including intelligence assessments, which states that generative AI development has the potential to bring significant global benefits but will also increase risks to safety and security by enhancing threat actor capabilities and increasing the effectiveness of attacks.
- Future Risks of Frontier AI: A report from the Government Office for Science, which considers key uncertainties in frontier AI development, the risks future systems might pose, and a range of potential scenarios for AI out to 2030.
The Summit will focus on risks at the frontier of AI around the misuse of AI by non-state actors to perform harms like cyber-attacks or to design bioweapons, as well as risks around the loss of control of AI, where systems may act autonomously in a way that does not align with our intentions or values.
Recognising that AI can have broader impacts on society too, the Summit will also include discussions on the risks from the integration of frontier AI on society like election disruption, bias, crime and online safety. There is also a vast amount of work taking place to address other risks from AI in other international forums and at national level.
Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan said:
“This marks a watershed moment, as the UK becomes the first country in the world to formally summarise the risks presented by this powerful technology.
“There is no question that AI can and will transform the world for the better, from making everyday tasks easier, to improving healthcare and tackling global challenges like world hunger and climate change. But we cannot harness its benefits without also tackling the risks.
“No country can do this alone, which is why we will be welcoming governments, academics, civil society groups and businesses to Bletchley Park next month to build a shared understanding of the risks while discussing how we can develop and use AI safely and responsibly so that it changes lives for the better.”