ChatGPT Returns to Italy as OpenAI Meets Privacy Regulations

OpenAI addresses Italian data protection authority’s concerns and enhances user privacy and age verification

  • ChatGPT returns to Italy after OpenAI meets the privacy demands of Italian data protection authority, Garante.
  • OpenAI implements measures including age verification, updated privacy policy, and a new form for EU users to object to data usage for training.

San Francisco-based OpenAI announced on Friday that its artificial intelligence chatbot, ChatGPT, is now available again in Italy. The company has met the demands of Italian regulators, who had temporarily blocked the AI software over privacy concerns.

OpenAI stated that it satisfied a series of conditions set by the Italian data protection authority, Garante, in order to have the ban lifted by the April 30 deadline. “ChatGPT is available again to our users in Italy,” OpenAI said in an email. “We are excited to welcome them back, and we remain dedicated to protecting their privacy.”

In March, Garante ordered OpenAI to temporarily halt the processing of Italian users’ personal information while it investigated a potential data breach. The authority clarified that it did not wish to hinder AI development but emphasized the importance of adhering to the European Union’s strict data privacy regulations.

OpenAI said it “addressed or clarified the issues” raised by the watchdog. The measures implemented include providing information on its website about how it collects and uses data to train the algorithms powering ChatGPT, offering a new form for EU users to object to their data being used for training, and adding a tool to verify users’ ages during the sign-up process.

Italian users have shared what appear to be screenshots of the changes, such as a menu button asking users to confirm their age and links to the updated privacy policy and training data help page.

OpenAI’s email contained links to new English-language webpages aimed at satisfying Italian regulators. A spokesperson did not immediately respond when asked if Italian-language versions were also available.