Artificial intelligence in Canada threatened by foreign interference, says CSIS

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Artificial intelligence in Canada under threat from foreign interference, says CSIS

Canada's technological innovation and resulting economic progress remain vulnerable to foreign forces, brief says.

Espionage and foreign interference tactics will target the growing artificial intelligence (AI) sector, Canada's intelligence service warns.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) says in a recently released brief that countries like China and Russia can take an interest in Canada's AI through any means available, including the use of intelligence. state-sponsored investment and the use of secret agents.

The analysis by the federal agency's Intelligence Assessment Service was completed in July 2021, but only recently released to The Canadian Press in response to a request for #x27;access to information filed in October of the same year.

Canada's technological innovation and resulting economic progress are vulnerable to foreign forces , can we learn.

The CSIS says, for example, emerging artificial intelligence capabilities are seen as key to developing ways to reduce plastic in the oceans, finding a vaccine to treat the next pandemic, stemming the polluting emissions that cause climate change and find safe navigation methods for autonomous driving of automobiles.

The analysis notes that artificial intelligence is a priority for Canada, considered essential to national goals of innovation and prosperity.

However, many many other countries, including hostile state actors, have established their own national AI strategies and goals, the document reads. Some of these countries, particularly China and Russia, will use espionage and foreign-influenced activities to advance their national interests, at the expense of Canada.

As a result, artificial intelligence has been reflected in the federal government's intelligence priorities for several years, according to CSIS.

CSIS finds that Canada faces two main types of threats related to artificial intelligence.

The first involves espionage and foreign interference in attempts to gain access to the technology and know-how of AI owners through trade, foreign investment state-sponsored, joint ventures, cyber espionage and intelligence operatives.

Much of these efforts target Canadian universities and start-ups, which are responsible for the majority of our AI innovation, but which also represent an environment conducive to espionage.

The second threat relates to the risks to the safety and security of Canadians and the country's armed forces when adversaries obtain and use AI capabilities for intelligence purposes.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) works to preserve national security.

According to the executive director of the Center for International Governance Innovation in Waterloo, Ontario, Aaron Shull, CSIS's assessment seems correct, but if it were up for it ;to him, he would go even further.

Mr. Shull cited other foreign threats in this area, including AI-based cyberattacks that quickly find loopholes in computer code, use of facial recognition, automated bots that spread disinformation and reliance on international supply chains that are partly controlled by political adversaries.

I think we need a comprehensive review of our national security and intelligence capabilities and services. We need to take a more strategic view of where Canada needs to be in 20 years, Mr. Shull explained in an interview.

Canada could then make the investments and the changes necessary to make this happen, he said.

CSIS says the importance of protecting Canadian artificial intelligence and the big data that underpins it tend goes beyond simply protecting the privacy of citizens and involves securing the future of our nation against the actions of hostile state actors intent on taking advantage of their abilities against us.

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