Microsoft, one of OpenAI’s largest investors, restricted ChatGPT access for its employees on Thursday, citing “security and data concerns.” According to CNBCMicrosoft employees were barred from accessing ChatGPT, a popular AI chatbot developed by OpenAI, in which Microsoft has invested $13 billion.
CNBC The report said an internal website told employees, “Due to security and data concerns, several AI tools are no longer available for employee use.” Microsoft employees were subsequently unable to access ChatGPT, which was listed as one of the tools prohibited for employee use.
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Microsoft restored access to ChatGPT and removed it from the list of banned tools after CNBC published the report, later saying, “We restored service shortly after we discovered our error. As we’ve said before, we encourage employees and customers to use services like Bing Chat Enterprise. and ChatGPT Enterprise which comes with a greater level of privacy and security protection.”
The close relationship between the two companies made the news that Microsoft banned its employees from using ChatGPT all the more shocking as Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella shared the stage with OpenAI CEO Sam Altman during OpenAI’s first developer conference this week.
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Microsoft has partnered with OpenAI for nearly a year, investing significantly in the company’s AI technology and even incorporating it into its Bing Chat feature. Bing Chat is supported by GPT-4 and works as an AI chatbot that can access the Internet, bringing online searches to a new level.
GPT-4 is a more robust model than the free version of ChatGPT and is only accessible through a ChatGPT Plus subscription from OpenAI or, alternatively, through Microsoft’s Bing Chat.
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DALL-E 3, another new technology from OpenAI, is also heavily incorporated into Microsoft’s AI tools, as users can access it through Bing Chat or Bing Image Creator to create images using AI.
ChatGPT has taken over the AI world since its launch almost a year ago and currently has over 100 million users. As people discovered its user-friendly interface and powerful content creation capabilities, various reports of people using ChatGPT to write books and college papers have been published and its use has been extensively validated.
Some companies, including Samsung, have banned their employees from using AI chatbots on company devices when employees give ChatGPT secret codes to debug.