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NCC Boss Cautions AI Developers on Transparency About Data, Algorithms, and Models Used in AI Systems

NCC Boss Cautions AI Developers on Transparency About Data, Algorithms, and Models Used in AI Systems

While the country marks the World Consumer Day last week, the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), took time to warn AI Developers of the need to be transparent about the data, algorithms, and models used in AI systems stating that this ensures that decisions made by AI can be explained and mistakes can be fixed to ensure everyone is treated fairly, regardless of their background. This helps prevent biased decisions or discrimination thereby promoting inclusivity and equality.

Speaking at an event organised by the Commission to mark the 2024 World Consumer Right Day, the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Dr  Aminu Maida, said: “Responsible AI means using it in an ethical way throughout its development, deployment, and usage. This includes considering issues like bias, privacy, transparency, and accountability. According to reports, responsible AI aims to empower consumers, build trust, and minimize negative effects.”

According to him, protecting citizens’ privacy is extremely important when using AI, and that organisations should handle personal data responsibly, following strict privacy regulations. Respecting privacy builds trust in AI systems noting that responsible AI requires mechanisms for holding systems accountable and explaining their decisions. Consumers should understand how AI systems work and have a way to address issues or biases.

However, he observed that developing regulations and policies to govern AI deployment can be complex and as well as playing catch up due to technological advancements saying that  although most legislative and governing bodies are looking to regulate this technology, there has been continuous struggle to strike the right balance between risk mitigation and stifling innovation, while promoting innovation and ensuring security and trust.

“In this era that has seen the rise of AI and IoT cybersecurity, it is important to break silos and foster collaboration of the Quadruple Helix Innovation model comprising of the Academia, the Industry, Government and Society to share ideas. AI developers and Regulators have to ensure AI system algorithms consider, ethics and inclusivity”, he said.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Deputy Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau,NCC, Mr Clem Omife said that the Commission recognizes the important position the consumers occupy in the telecommunications ecosystem, and therefore will continue develop and promote consumer centric initiatives aimed at ensuring that the rights of consumers are protected. Consumer Education also form a major tool for promoting consumer rights and therefore the Commission continues to engage with consumers and consumer issues using it various outreach programmes such the Telecom Consumer Parliament, Telecom Consumer Conversations: Market Conversation, Village Square Dialogue, Campus Conversation, NYSC Camp Sensitization Town Hall on Radio. We have also published the Telecom Consumer Handbook and transcribed into Braille for the Visually impaired.

He disclosed that the NCC is in the final process of deploying the Automated Consumer Complaints Management system, which will further expand the complaints channels and improve complaints resolutions even at First level with Service Providers

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