About a year after the European Union became the first entity to propose regulations governing the use of artificial intelligence, Canada is following in its footsteps by proposing its own first-ever private sector regulation of AI.
Similarities between the two regulations reveal the influence, and the pressure, that the EU’s own AI approach is having on other jurisdictions looking to rein in an industry that had been left unchecked.
This June, the Canadian government introduced Bill C-27. If passed, the bill would not only reform federal private-sector privacy law but also regulate artificial intelligence under a new Artificial Intelligence and Data Act (AIDA).
To be sure, the Canadian and the European Union bills are still both in draft mode. But if the European Union passes its bill, it will create a pressure for other countries to pass their own—starting with Canada.
“With the EU AI regulation, we’re going to see a greater spotlight being shone on [AI-related] harms, because if it passes, which I think it will, we’re going to start seeing more regulatory action, more enforcement and action being taken against people in the AI industry,” said Justin P’ng, an associate in Canada’s law firm Fasken’s privacy and cybersecurity group. “There’s going to be that greater spotlight on it. And I think that’s going to put more pressure on other jurisdictions to act, to regulate something that has not been regulated historically or recently.”