OpenAI Unveils ‘Incognito Mode’ for ChatGPT Amid Privacy Concerns

    New features prioritize user privacy while company prepares to launch ‘ChatGPT Business’ subscription

    In response to growing concerns over user data privacy, OpenAI has introduced an “incognito mode” for its popular chatbot ChatGPT. This new feature ensures that users’ conversation history will not be saved or used to improve the AI. Additionally, OpenAI plans to roll out a “ChatGPT Business” subscription offering enhanced data controls.

    Privacy Protection Takes Center Stage

    The San Francisco-based startup’s decision comes as scrutiny increases over how ChatGPT and similar chatbots manage vast amounts of user data. This data is often used to train and refine AI capabilities. Recently, Italy banned ChatGPT due to potential privacy violations, with France and Spain launching their own investigations into the service.

    Mira Murati, OpenAI’s Chief Technology Officer, confirmed to Reuters that the company complies with European privacy laws and is actively working to reassure regulators. The introduction of new features results from a months-long effort to place users “in the driver’s seat” when it comes to data collection, rather than being a direct response to Italy’s ban.

    According to Murati, OpenAI’s ultimate goal is to ensure complete user privacy, aligning AI models to users’ needs and expectations without compromising personal information.

    New ChatGPT Features and Future Plans

    The latest product release allows users to disable “Chat History & Training” in their settings and export their data. Nicholas Turley, the OpenAI Product Officer who described the feature as an “incognito mode” similar to those found in internet browsers, explained that conversations will still be retained for 30 days to monitor for abuse before being permanently deleted.

    Looking ahead, OpenAI’s upcoming business subscription will not use conversations for AI model training by default. Microsoft Corp, an investor in OpenAI, already offers ChatGPT to businesses. Murati believes that the new service will appeal to Microsoft’s existing cloud customer base.

    Balancing AI Improvement and User Privacy

    User data has been crucial for OpenAI in enhancing its software, and addressing issues such as reliability and political bias. However, the company acknowledges that it still has challenges to overcome as it strives to balance AI development with user privacy concerns.

    The introduction of an incognito mode for ChatGPT signals a significant shift in the industry, as companies increasingly prioritize user privacy while still aiming to provide cutting-edge AI services. As regulatory scrutiny intensifies, it remains to be seen how other AI service providers will adapt their practices to meet evolving privacy standards.

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