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UK and US to support work on privacy enhancing technologies

21/07/22
Privacy key on keyboard
Image source: istock.com/Naeblys

The UK and US governments have launched a joint initiative to encourage the development of privacy enhancing technologies (PETs).

They have made a £1.3 million fund available to develop federated learning solutions that enable artificial intelligence models to be trained on sensitive data without organisations having to reveal, share or combine their raw data.

The chosen solutions will be showcased at the Summit for Democracy in the first half of 2023.

Planning for the challenges is being led by the UK’s Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation and Innovate UK, along with the US White House Office of Science and Technology, the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the National Science Foundation.

Two tracks have been identified. One is to transform the prevention of financial crime and tackle the challenge of international money laundering, with innovators being able to work with global transaction data created by SWIFT, the international provider of secure financial messaging services.

The other is to bolster pandemic response capabilities with access to a synthetic dataset created by the University of Virginia’s Biocomplexity Institute.

The competition will involve the submission of a white paper, prototype development and red teaming phase. It is open for entries until 19 September.

Power of data

Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Nadine Dorries said: “These cutting edge technologies can help us to harness the power of data to tackle global challenges like international money laundering and to plan for subsequent public health emergencies, while respecting citizens’ rights.

“This partnership demonstrates the UK and US’ commitment to working together to address transnational challenges, as well as to ensuring that our vision of the tech revolution - one that is open and democratic - prevails.”

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