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European Commission to Expand the Definition of Child Sexual Abuse Material to Include AI Content

The rules also expand on the definition of criminal offenses related to child abuse adding the live streaming of CSAM under their ambit.

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The European Commission adopted a proposal to update its criminal law rules on child sexual abuse and sexual exploitation on February 6. The new rules expand on the definition of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) across European Union member states to include AI-generated CSAM or deepfakes. The rules also expand on the definition of criminal offenses related to child abuse adding the live streaming of CSAM under their ambit. Why it matters: According to the exploratory memorandum of the proposal, deepfakes stretch the definition of 'image' since AI-generated CSAM could "make use of avatars including sensory feedback, e.g. through devices providing a perception of touch." It explains that accessing child sexual abuse material is often the first step towards hands-on abuse, regardless of whether it depicts real or realistic abuse and exploitation. As such, adding deepfake CSAM under the regulatory ambit ensures that CSAM regulation is future-proof and keeps pace with technological developments. In the recent past, multiple countries have been taking note of the dangers posed by deepfake technology and working on ways to strengthen their regulatory hold over it. For instance, in the US lawmakers have introduced a bill that allows victims of AI-generated porn and deepfakes to sue for compensation. In India, the IT Ministry recently announced its plans to update its platform governance laws (the IT Rules, 2021) to regulate generative artificial intelligence (AI) and artificial intelligence companies. Given the general impetus to regulate deepfakes in different nations, the European Commission's proposal to regulate deepfake CSAM…

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